Business litigation can be complex and expensive. It may also be doubly frustrating if the final decision is not satisfactory. Losing a court case can mean a substantial financial loss due to the court decision’s impact on the business with additional related expenses. While it is never good business to throw good money after bad, there may be good reasons to pursue an appeal.
Common grounds for an appeal
There are a variety of reasons for appealing a decision in appellate court. Some common ones include:
- The judge may have misinterpreted a law or an applicable precedent.
- The judge did not allow an attorney to present important evidence that could impact the initial ruling.
- The evidence presented did not support the judge’s ruling.
- The judge should not have allowed certain evidence.
Weighing options for an appeal
Clients who are unhappy with a court ruling should discuss the matter with their attorney who handled the case. No attorney likes to lose a case, but they will typically offer a fair and unbiased analysis of the trial. They can also explain the potential results (pros and cons) of continuing the case. Even if they disagree with the initial ruling, they may point out that pursuing an appeal is not in the client’s best interests because it could further harm the business or its reputation.
Suppose the client is less interested than the attorney in pursuing an appeal. In that case, the attorney should offer a solid evidence-based argument for why it is good business to move forward with an appeal. The client can then determine if it is in their best interests to appeal a lower court’s decision.