Dispute resolution, what’s that about then? That’s a question we get asked a lot. It is certainly one of the less easily defined parts of legal work rhw get involved with.
We can usually provide a typical example of the sort of ‘matter’ we would expect to handle in, for example, Family Law or Wills & Probate. With disputes it is a very different world. The disputes that clients ask rhw to help with are from very diverse areas, as there are very few parts of our lives where we don’t potentially come into conflict with others.
To shed some light on the disputes we have dealt with, the following list are some of the more regular areas our legal team get involved with:
- Property Disputes: including boundary disputes, new build and neighbour issues.
- Debt Recovery: people refusing to pay what they owe crops up in business and personal transactions.
- Contractual Disputes: a very common area for disagreements to occur.
- Contested Probate: as families become more complex so does the scope for disputes over Wills and Inheritance matters such as the value of intangible assets.
- Online Defamation: the internet has provided increasing opportunities for those with an axe to grind or to make defamatory comments.
- Disputes over ownership of property and assets: This can bring up all sorts of disputes and from all sorts of backgrounds.
Sometimes a dispute has flared up from seemingly nothing, others have been burning on for months or even years. What we have learned from dealing with disputes across the board, is that once money is involved people’s behaviour, even people you know and trust, can change and change radically at that. It is always best to formalise arrangements in writing, so everyone knows where they are.
Why would using rhw help sort out a dispute anyway? Positions often become completely entrenched; neither side willing to budge an inch, often because of behaviour post the original dispute. Having a third party with some authority intervene can illicit a response from those who were previously insistent on sticking their head in the sand and avoiding dealing with the problem.
If the parties involved are forced to deal with the dispute and reach an agreement by the intervention of a solicitor’s letter or call, then that can often be the catalyst for a change in behaviour and the beginning of the end of the matter.
Obviously not every matter will end up being amicably settled but if it comes down to having to live with the cloud of a dispute over hanging you, or bringing the matter to a close by legal means, we think most people would choose the latter.
rhw Dispute Resolution Solicitors, Guildford, Surrey
Need some legal advice on a dispute? Not sure if rhw can help you?