There are many things for which a company should allocate a budget line, such as property expenses, salaries and insurance. For many businesses in Houston, setting aside money for business litigation is also imperative. A lawsuit over business disputes can be costly. Additionally, having the right kind of legal help can help a company protect its assets, including intellectual property. According to recent reports, the price tag of such cases is only getting bigger.
According to a recent survey regarding litigation trends, 20 percent of the businesses involved state that they are involved in at least one government investigation. More than twice that number of companies reported that their top legal concern is a government inquiry. Additionally, more than 36 percent of businesses in Texas state that they are either a plaintiff or defendant in lawsuits with damages upward of $20 million, which is a 20 percent increase from 2011. One attorney noted that regardless of if a lawsuit is filed, a government investigation by itself can be costly.
The number of cases that go to litigation has leveled off, but the ones that do are increasingly complex and involve more money, according to survey results. Increasingly, there is additional discovery evidence in these cases as more and more people are using social media and mobile devices to discuss business matters.
Of the businesses that participated in the survey, more than one-third reported that they employ five full-time attorneys to work on litigation matters. Any business facing potential government regulation or other legal issues should seek the advice of an attorney.
Source: Houston Chronicle, “Companies spending more on legal battles, regulatory actions, survey finds,” Mark Curriden, April 14, 2014