Practice Areas: Contract Disputes

Protecting you and your company in contract disputes with opponents of any size

Protecting You and Your Company

At Williams Commercial Law Group, our lawyers handle all aspects of contract disputes. Our highly technological and innovative approach to business contract problems allows us to successfully take on opponents and law firms of any size, save costs, and get more successful results. We have particular expertise in protecting small and medium sized businesses from the bullying tactics of well-funded corporations. In other words, we have the resources, technology, and knowledge necessary to help you slay the giant. Ironically, our reputation as giant-slayers has sometimes led large corporations to hire us too. Our cutting edge approach to legal representation in contract disputes is an enormous advantage and makes us a clear choice for both individuals and businesses.

Business Divorce – Breaking Up With Your Business Partner

Starting and operating your own successful, privately-held business is the culmination of the American dream for some people. All too often, however, things start to go terribly wrong. Maybe your so-called partner is trying to push you out and claim ownership of the company. Perhaps your former employee has started his own company and is trying to take your customers and trade secrets with him. Maybe a competitor is using unfair tactics to jeopardize your business operations. Or perhaps running a business isn’t turning out to be everything that you imagined and you simply want out. Like the breakdown of a marriage, the breakdown of a business, especially when it involves the business founders or their family members, can be contentious, emotional, and extremely messy. Whatever the case may be, it is our job to fight for and protect your rights during the divorce of your business.

Profit-Sharing, Deadlock, and Ownership Disputes

A variety of scenarios can lead to a business divorce. Your partner may be taking more than his or her share, or acting beyond the powers that he or she has. A minority shareholder may be shut out of business operations and decisions by the majority shareholders and receive insufficient distributions, while managers continue to collect excessive salaries. Board members may disagree on the direction of the company’s operations to such a degree that the board becomes deadlocked and unable to make the decisions necessary to keep the business operating. Partners in a joint venture may become at odds with one another and agree to disband their business, but are unable to agree on who has ownership of different business assets.

Trade Secrets and Intellectual Property Litigation

A company’s trade secrets or other intellectual property is often the lifeblood of its business. Whether it is a customer list, a proprietary formula, software code, or a highly confidential process or procedure, losing it to another can destroy whatever advantage the company had in the marketplace. We have successfully litigated dozens of trade secrets matters for both plaintiffs and defendants.

Emergency or Injunctive Relief

In many cases, litigation becomes immediately necessary due to the potential harm to you and your business. Speed is essential in these cases. For example, suppose that a former employee or business partner has taken your trade secrets to set up a competing shop elsewhere. Or your company’s controller has embezzled money that, for all you know, is being spent and will soon disappear. In such cases, the circumstances are exigent and unlikely to be resolved without immediate court intervention. As a result, we would act immediately to maintain the status quo through a temporary restraining order or preliminary injunction until the matter can be negotiated or tried on the merits. That may include freezing a bank account, getting money returned, or preventing a trade secrets thief from using what was stolen.

Employment Agreements and Non-Compete/Non-Solicitation Covenants

A similar situation exists when a current or former employee violates an employment agreement or non-compete covenant, to the detriment of your business operations. Perhaps a former employee has set up shop as a competing business and is contacting your biggest customers, or is trying to take your best employees with him, in violation of the employment contract. Again, you may need to seek immediate court intervention to stop the harmful actions to your business on at least a temporary basis, until the legal dispute is resolved. We have also successfully represented clients who have been falsely accused of stealing customers or employees in breach of an employment agreement. If you are encountering any of these difficulties, please call us today.

Commercial Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution

We know that business and commercial litigation can be lengthy and costly. There are two potential alternatives to litigating a business dispute in court – arbitration and mediation. In arbitration, the parties to the case agree upon one or more neutral third parties to make a decision about the dispute. The third party arbitrator’s decision is binding on all of the parties and in most cases, cannot be appealed. Arbitration clauses are common in business contracts, since arbitration involves generally faster, more economical, and private proceedings than traditional litigation. This swift and informal resolution, however, can result in hasty decisions from which there is generally no appeal or other form of recourse.
On the other hand, mediation is a type of non-binding dispute resolution that involves a third-party neutral mediator trying to help the parties reach a mutually acceptable resolution of their conflict. Mediation, like arbitration, is generally far quicker and more cost-effective than litigation, and sometimes can result in a more flexible and creative resolution to a dispute. However, mediation is unlikely to be successful without a strong and experienced mediator, and works best with parties who are friendly, communicative, and open to reaching a resolution.

Tortious Interference with Contracts and Trade Defamation

The knowledgeable attorneys of Williams Commercial Law Group have litigated all types of business torts cases in the state of Arizona, including those involving tortious interference with contracts and trade defamation. Business torts are civil, as opposed to criminal, wrongs, which adversely affect your business in some manner. A competitor, for example, may be lying to your customers about your company in an effort to steal business. These unlawful actions can cause long-term harm to your company and destroy your company’s bottom line. Hence, we aggressively pursue and defend allegations of false and misleading statements and representations about businesses, whether they are published orally, in print, or on the Internet.
The extensive background and years of experience in contract disputes that we have at Williams Commercial Law Group make us the best choice for your business needs. Call us to speak with your Phoenix contract dispute lawyers today.

Antitrust and Unfair Competition Litigation

We handle antitrust and unfair competition litigation in both state and federal courts. Under antitrust laws and similar laws designed to stem unfair trade competition, government officials have the authority to carry out investigations of individuals and companies that involve the manipulation of competition for unfair gain. You can also sue or be sued by your competitors for antitrust violations or unfair competition, which typically involve trade practices that create an unfair competitive advantage. We are here to protect you and your company from unfair competition and to defend you against those claims by your competitors or the government.

For example:

Autonumerics v. Bayer Industries

We represented Autonumerics in a breach of contract action against Bayer Industries regarding the computer numerical controls for milling machines built by Bayer. It involved an installment sale contract and was a first-impression case in Arizona under the installment sale provisions of the Uniform Commercial Code.

A first control was manufactured and delivered, but Bayer refused to accept a control that had been manufactured and it did not seek more deliveries. The contract did not have delivery dates and there was a conflict between the written terms of the contract. The order was for a total of twenty-six controls. Daryl Williams obtained a jury verdict in favor of Autonumerics for all twenty-six controls based on future lost profits.

Jury verdict in favor of Autonumerics.

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Other case types we've had success with:

Antitrust and Unfair Competition Litigation

Under antitrust laws and similar laws designed to stem unfair trade competition, the government can investigate individuals and companies regarding the manipulation of competition for unfair gain. You can also sue or be sued by your competitors for antitrust violations or unfair competition.

Commercial Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution

There are two potential alternatives to litigating a business dispute in court – arbitration and mediation.

Tortious Interference with Contracts and Trade Defamation

Business torts are civil, as opposed to criminal, wrongs, which adversely affect your business in some manner. A competitor, for example, may be lying to your customers about your company in an effort to steal business.

Alison Gentry

“He plays ‘bad cop’ so well. He enters the room like he’s
in charge and making all the calls. .”

“What impressed me about Daryl Williams is about 50 things, but here’s a couple. He was honest and clear in communicating his expectations and goals of the case. He plays ‘bad cop’ so well. He enters the room like he’s in charge and making all the calls. It works. Although he would have happily allowed me to continue the law suit, he empowered me to make the best decision FOR ME.

This was a great experience. I would work with Daryl Williams over and over again. He truly wanted the best outcome for me and my family. I believe I was in the best and most capable legal hands, and that comfort I had was priceless.”

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us, though doing so does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established. Our description of what we believe to be superior technology and how we win cases reflects our typical approach to litigation, which we believe:  (i) gives us a competitive advantage, and (ii) is responsible for any success we have had. But we do not win every case. Other lawyers may have technology or approaches that they believe gives them an advantage. Also, the results that we have obtained in other cases or that are described in our clients’ testimonials do not guarantee, promise, or predict the outcome of your case, which depends on the law, facts, and evidence specific to it.