Katrina Smeltzer and Joe Devereux recently attended DRI’s Professional Liability Seminar held in New York City.
They learned about several interesting topics, but one of the presentations they attended focused on the stress and anxiety that litigation, and specifically trial, can cause professional clients. They learned how to recognize this stress and how to address it before it becomes a major problem.
They learned about the following helpful tips for ways to prevent and/or alleviate litigation stress:
- Continuously preparing the client for what is to come by explaining the process and any anticipated hurdles. This includes discussing and agreeing to a plan for the client’s involvement in the litigation.
- Keeping open communication between the client and attorney, including regular status updates and advising the client on the next steps in the litigation process. Involving the clients in decisions on strategy where appropriate.
- Open discussions about the strengths and weaknesses of the case, including what the expected outcomes are. Early recognition of weaknesses can better prepare the client for outcomes and head-off surprise.
- Frankness on the reputational and financial impact a trial could have on the client. Informed decisions will help relieve anxiety.
- Watch for and head-off “decisional fatigue”. This can lead to hasty decisions or inhibit resolution.
The team at Sandberg Phoenix will strive to meet all of these points. While litigation can be stressful, especially for professional clients, our value in each client will help to make the process as smooth as possible.