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The Yau Law Firm
Focused on Protecting Businesses and Representing the Injured

Negotiate instead of Litigate: how negotiating can lead to saving grief and money–Part 4


In this final blog part about negotiations, I address the question: “is the other party likely to agree to a certain result if you present a reasonable offer?”  In my previous Yau Law firm blog posts, I addressed how negotiations can save time and money if you (1) can benefit from saving or having a better relationship with the other party, and (2) believe that the litigation will cost more than the amount of money you may receive from the suit. Remember that negotiations work in any kind of matter, whether it be intellectual property ownership disputes, family law, civil litigation, or business disputes.

Every party to a dispute has something they want. For an example, a business may want to protect its intellectual property so as to prevent a loss of commercial income. So, this company may desire to offer licensing as a reasonable offer as opposed to moving straight into litigation. The other party may desire this; it is one method of continuing the commercial activity without having to re-brand or quit altogether.

The key idea is to offer something reasonable. Oftentimes, parties to litigation are so angry and frustrated with the underlying problem that any offer can seem like a joke. If the offer is indeed something that the parties would never reasonably consider, then the offer will be seen as an insult. But, providing a reasonable offer–an offer that speaks to what a party wants–will steer you in the direction of settling.

To present an offer that would tempt the other party to settling, there are a few things that you should ask and think about:

  • What does the other party want?
  • Can I reasonably give what the other party wants?
  • Would the other party be willing to give me what I want if I can give the other party [insert item]?
  • Why is the other party guarded against me? Why am I guarded against him/her?
Communication is also key. One wouldn’t know what the other party wants without first asking. This can be tricky if the other party is represented by counsel (which oftentimes is the case), or if the other party is highly combative. A trained attorney who knows how to communicate well and the litigation process understands what kinds of offers may prompt an opposing party to settle.
We can tell you whether your case can benefit from a negotation; give us a call today to find out what we can do for you!
Article by: Florence C. Monauer

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