A LAW firm in Huddersfield has reported a rise in litigation as a result of the long recession.
Baxter Caulfield, which has offices in Station Street, said its commercial and employment litigation department had been busier than ever in the last 12 months.
An analysis of the firm’s cases reveals five top reasons for disputes leading to the instruction of solicitors – disputes between owner-managers within private businesses; collection of debt; changes in terms and conditions of supply; employment issues; and breach of confidentiality.
Stephen Newman, senior partner, said: “Private businesses are still finding the going really tough. They often need to make changes to reduce costs, but are hindered by issues arising from contracts that were drawn up in more certain economic times.
“When incomes and profits are reduced, business owners invariably reassess the long term viability of commercial relationships. This often creates tension in those relationships.
“There is no doubt that the diminished economy has contributed to the escalation of disputes and lawyers are being instructed more often than would be the case in times of greater prosperity. Tighter money means that all avenues are being pursued to maximise income or reduce costs.”
Said Mr Newman: “In the rush to law, people sometimes forget that lawyers can also be used to mediate or arbitrate on disputes.
“Alternative dispute resolution can sometimes prove to be a relatively quick and less costly means of settling disagreements, and it should not be ignored.”