When running a business you may occasionally be faced with a dispute that you will need to resolve. Whether the dispute is with a customer, a member of staff, a supplier or management there are several things that you should have in place to minimise the impact of business disputes in your company.
The first thing that you should is to ensure you plan for disputes at the start of any new transactions or projects. You should try to think of anything that could go wrong and plan for what you would do in the event of it happening. You may also be able to take steps to avoid the dispute occurring in the first place. The more prepared you can be at the start of a project the more it will help if things go wrong at a later date. You should always put your plan down in writing.
It is very important that you write up a detailed contract with whoever you are doing business with, it should include every detail of the transaction, including the time frame and any money that is involved. You should consider getting your contracts looked over by a solicitor to ensure that they are water tight and that there are no margins for interpretation. Your contract should include everything that you had previously planned when you thought about how you would deal with a dispute. This will give you a good basis to go on should anything go wrong.
Your business should already have a firm set of terms and conditions. If it doesn’t it is important that you put them in place as soon as possible. This will mean that if requested, anyone that you go into a contract with will need to adhere to your terms and conditions. You can set these so that they apply to all elements of your business and so that they will offer you extra protection in the event of a dispute.
Another step that you should take is to ensure that you record a dispute in writing as soon as a problem occurs. This might be in the form of a letter or an email to the party who has caused the problem. Having firm evidence of when a problem occurred will help you should the dispute progress. You should also try to get legal advice from a specialist business solicitor as soon as a dispute occurs, the sooner that you take action the quicker that your problem will be resolved.
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