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When do I need outside counsel to resolve my business dispute?

On Behalf of | Feb 7, 2024 | Civil Litigation & Disputes

When it comes to running a business, disputes are an inevitable occurrence. Whether it’s a contractual disagreement, a regulatory issue or a conflict with a business partner, navigating these disputes is crucial to maintaining the health and continuity of your enterprise. While many large corporations boast an in-house legal team, there comes a time when seeking outside counsel becomes not only prudent but essential for owners of small, medium-sized and large ventures alike.

Engaging outside counsel can often be a cost-effective solution, especially in the event of complex or protracted disputes. While the hourly rates of external lawyers may appear higher than those of in-house counsel, the efficiency and experience they bring to the table can lead to swifter resolutions and ultimately lower overall costs. If you run a business with the assistance in-house counsel, it’s critical to identify instances when it’s necessary to obtain external legal assistance.

Conflict of interest

In certain situations, the interests of the company may conflict with those of its executives, directors or shareholders. In such cases, relying solely on in-house counsel may not be advisable, as their loyalty and obligations may be divided. By engaging external counsel, corporations can ensure impartiality and avoid any perception of bias or impropriety. This is particularly important in high-stakes disputes where the reputation and integrity of the company are at stake.

Focused legal representation

In addition to addressing conflicts of interest, outside counsel brings a wealth of tailored legal experience to the table. While in-house legal teams possess a broad understanding of corporate law, they may lack the depth of knowledge required to tackle certain nuanced areas of the legal landscape.

Whether it’s intellectual property disputes, antitrust matters or complex international transactions, external legal representatives offer invaluable insights and strategies tailored to the unique needs of the case. By tapping into this legal experience, corporations can position themselves more effectively in negotiations and legal proceedings.

These are just a few common instances when an organization is better off obtaining external legal counsel than relying on in-house counsel alone. Even though the decision between these two options isn’t always so cut-and-dry, knowing the strengths of each option can help an organization make informed legal decisions.