A commercial dispute, when it arises, is not welcomed by either party.  Regardless of the reason for the dispute when it becomes apparent that the two parties involved are in dispute, they both face a time-consuming and often costly ordeal that distracts from their usual businesses.

The vast majority of disputes are fuelled by misunderstandings; very few are deliberate attempts at deception.  Some conflicts result from a failure to draft a contract suitable for the transaction to be undertaken, or a failure to diligently read a contract provided by the other party.  When embarking on a new commercial collaboration, even if you feel confident that you are capable of overseeing all aspects of any dealing, it is essential to be advised by an experienced commercial lawyer. 

The speed of commercial life often results in corner-cutting, especially if the transaction and ongoing business seem straightforward and without complications.  Unfortunately, this can prove to be a disastrous error of judgment, which can lead to oversights involving critical risks that expose the business to liability.  Failing to obtain legal advice to draft your business contract is a false economy that can have a far-reaching financial impact.

Khizar Arif, a partner, commented "contracts can be lengthy and drafted in archaic terms which do not necessarily chime with entrepreneurs today" Khizar further remarked, "your contract is the armour that protects your business dealings and depending on the type of transaction, you should either instruct your corporate and commercial legal advisor to amend your standard contract or consider drafting a contract that particularly addresses the nature of the business deal you are embarking on, to ensure that all the relevant legal protections are in place, should anything unexpected occur." 

If a dispute arises when you have jurisdiction and alternative dispute resolution clauses within your contract, you will have more certainty over the way the dispute is managed and there will be no unwelcome surprises.  Incorporating an alternative dispute resolution clause in your contract, defining how a dispute is first approached, ensures that the other party cannot go straight to court immediately without attempting to resolve the issue in a private and less costly manner, using either mediation or arbitration to arrive at a mutually agreed solution.   Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) often assists in retaining the business relationship and enables the parties to resume trading.  Whereas instigating litigation will often create indignation and offence between the parties making it not only far harder to reach a mutually acceptable remedy and the likelihood of being able to conduct further business together following the dispute is almost impossible.

Khizar Arif and Giambrone & Partners' litigation and dispute resolution team are highly experienced in managing commercial disputes between parties and have developed strategies in recognition of the importance of bringing disputes to an early resolution and if it is at all possible, to avoid the fracture of the business relationship. 

Khizar Arif was called to the Bar of England in 2001, he was then admitted to the Roll of Solicitors, attaining Higher Rights of Audience shortly thereafter. He holds a Master of Laws degree (LL.M.) focused on international business and maritime law from the University of Hamburg, Germany. He is also a member of the Solicitors' Association of Higher Court Advocates, the London Shipping Law Centre and the Deutscher Verein für Internationales Seerecht. 

He has a well-deserved reputation for achieving excellent results for his clients and has particular legal skills in dispute resolution.  His clients appreciate his robust approach and dogged persistence to achieving their objectives.

Khizar speaks the following languages:  English, German, Arabic, Punjabi, Potwari and Urdu

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.