We have experience working with different kinds of disputes and can therefore work constructively to help our clients find a solution to their problems. This means that we always set a strategy based on the client’s individual needs and thereby find the most effective solution. A dispute can often be resolved through negotiations without resorting to court proceedings. If the client has a long-standing working relationship, much can gained by reaching an amicable solution. If this is not possible we can represent the client as an individual or his or her company in court.
Dispute resolution outside of court
Disputes can quickly become costly for all parties. It is not financially desirable to run a dispute through the court system if the issue at hand is not worth much. To save costs and to maintain good relationships with, for example, a business partner, it can be beneficial to try to reach an agreeable resolution. The sooner this is done, the more cost-effective it is for the parties. It is important that the matter is finalised and that it is not possible for either party to come back with further demands after the matter has been agreed.
At Elison Wahlin, we have extensive experience of representing clients at negotiations and we always aim for a positive outcome for our clients considering the risks involved in a court process. If an agreement can be reached, we will assist in the making of a written contract to make sure the matter is finalised.
Dispute resolution in court
If the parties cannot come to an agreement, the claimant has to issue proceedings against the other party in the district court to have the matter tried.
A dispute in court starts with the claimant issuing proceedings against the defendant. On the claim form, the claimant needs to state his or her demands towards the defendant and the reason. The defendant can then address the claimant’s claim. Both parties can also put forward evidence to supports their case. It is important that a party to the proceedings considers the grounds for the claim and the evidence to present. During the proceedings, the court can also instruct the parties to finalise their claim and present their final evidence, which means that the parties cannot put forward any new evidence afterwards. The purpose is to make the process much more effective.
Do you need help in a dispute?
Dispute resolution in court – The way forward
Depending on how comprehensive and complicated the dispute is, the parties can, after the claim has been issued, be inclined to put forward written statements in which each party addresses the other party’s statement. A date is then set for what is called verbal preparation (muntlig förberedelse), which means that the district court calls the parties to a meeting where the case is considered and any ambiguous points are addressed. It is important that the court tries to get the parties to reach an agreement at this stage so the court does not have to assess the case. It is normal for disputes to be resolved in this manner, and the question of an amicable resolution is actualised continuously throughout the process. It is therefore good for a party to consider how he or she feels about a resolution and what he or she is prepared to accept in the agreement.
After the verbal preparation, the court can put forward additional questions for the parties to answer. A date is then set for a court hearing. The hearing starts with the claimant putting forward his or her claim and the defendant addressing the same. Both parties present the reason for their stance. After this, the parties present the background to the dispute and their demands together with the written evidence that supports the case. The parties are then often heard. The parties have a duty to speak the truth and not withhold anything at the hearing. If either party wants to call witnesses, these also have to be heard. Witnesses must take an oath and also speak the truth about what they know.
The hearing ends with the parties finalising their case, which means that they summarise what has been presented at the hearing and how the court should decide based on existing case law and legislation.
At Elison Wahlin, we have extensive experience of procedural law and can therefore represent our clients in court in the best possible way.
In commercial agreements it is not unusual for parties to have a clause making provision for arbitration instead of court hearings. The benefit of this is that it is often more effective and less time consuming. It also allows for the possibility of avoiding a public court hearing.
Another benefit of arbitration is that each party usually appoints its own arbitrator who in turn appoints a third one. This way, the parties can make sure the arbitrators have the skills required for the dispute in question. This takes into consideration the special circumstances of the case and ensures the result takes these into consideration.
Considering the costs involved, it can be worth agreeing that disputes should be resolved through arbitration. This usually means that the dispute is decided by arbitration, the amount of paperwork is limited and there is no court hearing. This keeps the costs down and allows the dispute to be handled much more quickly.
At Elison Wahlin we have extensive experience of working as representatives during arbitration.
We who work with dispute resolution
We have our base in western Sweden with offices in Gothenburg and Kungsbacka. We take assignments throughout Sweden and also internationally.