Frequently litigation counsel is first retained only when litigation becomes inevitable, either because a party has been sued or a dispute has reached the stage at which a party determines that a lawsuit must be filed. Involving litigation counsel before that stage is reached, however, can reap numerous benefits. Litigation counsel can advise on ADR procedures that can avoid the costs involved in litigation in state or federal court and can ensure that actions taken during the early stages of a dispute do not prejudice any ultimate litigation. Furthermore, gaining an early understanding of the merits of any potential litigation can help resolve the dispute in an appropriate manner.
In selecting litigation counsel, a potential client should locate counsel that specializes in the types of legal issues that are involved in the dispute—environmental or technology rights, for example—and that has a deep knowledge of the industry. Retaining counsel with industry expertise can greatly increase the odds that litigation will be successfully resolved.