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If a business dispute evolves into a full-blown legal battle, let us put our strength and experience on your side.

Frequently Asked Questions about Business Litigation

Q: What is involved when litigating a business issue?

A: This depends on the issue. The business owner would follow the same process for business litigation as he or she would for any civil lawsuit, including usually obtaining an attorney, pretrial matters such as motions, possible settlement negotiations, trial, and possibly appeal.

Q: What are some alternatives to litigation?

A: Businesses often use Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methods. The ADR process usually utilizes arbitration or mediation. These alternatives are attractive because they are often less expensive and more efficient than traditional litigation.

Any commercial enterprise can give rise to disputes that may end up in court. If you are being sued or need to take legal action to protect your business, you can rely on the commercial litigation attorneys of Seiller Waterman LLC in Louisville, Kentucky.

To learn more about the issues involved in commercial litigation, please review the information below and visit our Business Disputes & Commercial Litigation page. To consult with one of our experienced litigators about your legal issue, please contact Seiller Waterman LLC.

Business Litigation - An Overview

We are trial lawyers who are viewed as formidable courtroom adversaries. Our reputation for success at trial often encourages opponents to agree to a reasonable settlement outside of court

When considering litigation, a business owner should be aware of his or her options. In addition to the courtroom, there are other forums that might be appropriate, depending on the specific needs of the business. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR), described below, may be a desirable alternative to litigation or, if the cause of action is of an eligible size, small-claims court may be another venue for an owner to consider. Class actions may also be utilized by a business in certain circumstances. Additionally, business owners must understand the basic features of class actions, in the event that they are named as defendants.

A business contemplating bringing or defending a lawsuit would be well served by consulting with a seasoned trial attorney like one from Seiller Waterman LLC in Kentucky, Louisville, to better understand all of the legal options.

Litigation Procedure

There are many steps that a litigant must follow when pursuing a judicial resolution to an issue. The civil litigation process is relatively uniform and is controlled by federal or state court rules. The process itself involves a considerable volume of work, whether or not the case actually goes to trial. Required tasks include everything from filing an initial pleading such as a complaint, subsequent pleadings such as an answer or possibly counterclaims or third-party actions, to pursuing an appeal if the judgment is found to be unsatisfactory. The steps that are usually involved in litigation are:

  • Filing of an initial pleading and response
  • Motions (requests that a judge do something like allow specific evidence)
  • Discovery including depositions and interrogatories
  • Pretrial conferences to organize how the trial will proceed
  • Trial
  • Judgment
  • Appeals

Small-Claims Court

Business owners should be aware of small-claims court, a more informal court that deals with relatively minor lawsuits concerning everything from nuisance charges to minor money disputes. Small-claims court eligibility varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Generally, it is the first place a litigant will go when there is a business issue involving small monetary damages.

Class Action

A class action involves one or a couple of representative plaintiffs pursuing litigation on behalf of a larger group of people similarly aggrieved. The cause of action could be about anything from toxic-waste disposal to securities fraud. The fundamental purpose of a class action is to combine similarly situated litigants with similar causes of action, thereby gaining efficiency by consolidating many similar cases into one large case.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Alternative dispute resolution is a litigation alternative that includes both arbitration and mediation. Arbitration is a process that is less formal than a trial. It is generally cheaper and has fewer formal procedural rules; however, it also has limitations not present in courtroom litigation. Mediation is a more informal process than arbitration, and is facilitated by a neutral third party, a trained mediator, who hears both sides of a dispute and then attempts to reach a resolution through mutual compromise. Businesses use both of these methods of conflict resolution to reduce costs and time and avoid litigation.


When a business owner is confronted with an issue that may involve litigation, he or she should be aware of the different forums and alternatives that will best serve the specific needs of his or her company. If you are faced with a dispute involving your business, it is recommended that you understand all of your legal options. A business attorney at Seiller Waterman LLC in Kentucky, Louisville, would be an excellent resource for this information.

DISCLAIMER: This site and any information contained herein are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.

Seiller Waterman LLC
462 S. Fourth Street, 22nd Floor
Louisville, KY 40202

Phone: 502-584-7400
Fax: 502-583-2100
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