Businesses in New Hampshire and around the country should be prepared for the possibility that they might someday face a lawsuit, however unlikely this may seem. Small businesses in particular may be hurt by a lawsuit since they tend to not have legal departments who can help them in these situations. Companies of all sizes should take steps to prevent lawsuits, but they should also be ready in case an employee or customer does sue them.
Common reason for lawsuits
Customers or employees are the source of many lawsuits, and businesses may find themselves facing one even when they are certain they have acted fairly and within the parameters of the law. Common lawsuits brought by employees include allegations of discrimination, harassment, wrongful termination or employer negligence leading to an injury. Customers may sue because they have been injured on the premises, because they are dissatisfied with a product or service, or for discrimination, among other reasons.
What businesses can do
Some lawsuits may seem frivolous, but they can still be costly both in money and reputation to a business. Almost half of all small businesses have faced or been threatened with a lawsuit, and almost 20% of them have been sued by employees. Business liability insurance can help companies protect themselves. They should also be careful about any promises or claims made to customers or employees. If they are sued, they should maintain careful documentation about any incidents relating to the lawsuit.
Business owners may also want to identify an attorney ahead of time that they can turn to if they are facing litigation or even if they are in a situation that might eventually lead to litigation. An attorney might be able to provide strategies that can help business owners avoid saying or doing anything that could reflect poorly in the event that a customer or employee undertakes legal action.