Posted by: midpen | October 12, 2010

What to Do When you need a Lawyer NOW?

(Don’t Miss Mark R. Figueiredo’s talk at the MidPeninsula Professional Alliance breakfast meeting this October 19th. Register with this link to join us for a great talk!)

Things are going well at your business when all of a sudden, a visitor shows up and hands you a summons and Complaint. Yes, that is a lawsuit. Your day is no longer so great as it was before. What do you do next?

The first thing you should do is consult your attorney. Do not call the other side to try to quickly resolve things. Although you may mean well, what you say could and probably would be taken out of context and used against you. Also, remember, that while your communications with your attorney are confidential and privileged, your communications with anyone else are not.

Although you will have time to respond to the lawsuit, do not wait until the deadline nears. You may have claims for a counter-suit, which claims may need time to analyze and develop. If your attorney does not handle this type of lawsuit or if you do not have an attorney, seek out one with experience handling the type of lawsuit you are facing.

Your attorney will want to see the lawsuit and your documents relating to the dispute. You should gather whatever documents may be relevant and get a package ready to provide to your attorney. Be sure to also gather up insurance policies. If you do not have them handy, contact your insurance agent. The lawsuit may be covered by insurance, in which case your attorney and/or your insurance agent can assist you in submitting the claim for insurance coverage.

When you meet with your attorney, provide as much information as you can, including unfavorable information and arguments that the other side can be expected to make. Your communications with your attorney are confidential and privileged. The more information you provide, the better your  attorney can assist you.


  1. Very worthwhile presentation; enlightening insight into what to do and what not to do when faced with possible litigation. ‘Prevention vs. Cure.’

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