Small business owners have their hands full. While promoting their products and services, managing their employees, doing administrative tasks, and overseeing cash flow, they might not be thinking about getting sued. Getting sued can be the worst nightmare for every small business, and this is where a commercial litigation lawyer steps in to help.
A lawsuit can cost a small business up to millions of dollars. It is not a matter of if it will happen to your business, instead of when. Look for legal advice now to learn how you can protect your business from possible liabilities. Do what you can now so your company will not end up in federal or small claim courts. The industry your business belongs to is what determines the type of lawsuit you may face. Business lawsuits can be categorized into three. It can be filed by your employee, your customer, or by another business.
The lawsuit threat is not going away anytime soon. Instead, the incidence of lawsuits in business is perceived to rise. To protect yourself and your business against the possible legal mishap, you would want to know what you may face and how you can prepare for the worst-case scenario or a natural disaster.
Here are the standard business lawsuits that a business might encounter.
Slip and Fall Accidents
Suppose someone slips, tumbles or nosedives to the ground inside your business premises, possibly due to a wet surface and leads to severe injuries. In that case, you might face a lawsuit that can cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Breach of Contract
Breach of contract means that you failed to carry out what was written or been agreed on in the contract. It is an ordinary lawsuit against businesses. If you have dishonored a legally binding contract with your client or a vendor, such as a service contract or non-disclosure agreement, you can be held accountable.
It can take several forms, such as failure to deliver goods, failure to pay for the goods you received, having damaged or wrong goods, revealing your business or trading secret, and more.
Insufficient security and protection in your business may also lead to a lawsuit. The guarantee includes locks, lights, security cameras, and trimmed bushes. Negligence in these areas could lead to someone getting seriously injured or killed at a business location, usually by a third party.
Discrimination Against Employees
These are based on some violations regarding your approach to employment. Your business is liable if termination happened because of perceived discrimination due to age, gender identity, race, sex, religion, pregnancy status, or disability. This incident of wrongful termination or lack of overtime pay could lead to a lawsuit. It has been reported that a small and midsize business has a 12% chance of getting sued by their employees. Another claim that an employee may charge is the whistleblower lawsuit, but it is less common.
Your business is liable in the event one of your employees causes an accident while driving the vehicle owned by the company. This can be a case for commercial auto insurance. Suppose your business carries enough commercial auto insurance. In that case, this claim will not be a problem as your insurance will cover all the expenses involved.
Another workplace problem is harassment, bullying, psychological aggravation, and physical attack. A kind of harassment, including telling off-color jokes or romantically stalking an employee, is commonly reported these days.
Several claims against a business come from unhappy customers, unsatisfied with the customer service that they received. You can avoid such claims if business owners take the extra mile to make their customers happy. You also have to make your premises safe and well maintained.
Each state has its own limits when it comes to claims. Usually, small claims court addresses cases that range between $3,000 to $10,000. But for complaints that cost more will likely get discussed at the state court. If your business violated the U.S. Constitution or federal law, your case would be addressed in one of the federal courts. To protect you from spending in your legal battle, you have to save your business by getting the insurance that your business needs.
Having the right kind and amount of insurance will protect your company against possible legislation. Discuss your coverage needs with an insurance agent to learn what your business needs and how it can leverage you from these potential business lawsuits. Make yourself aware of the applicable laws and try to follow them as best as you can.