Global Law Firm Releases 2016 Survey of Litigation Trends

What does the Norton Rose Fulbright survey show for 2016?

The 2016 Litigation Trends Survey recently released by global law firm Norton Rose-Fulbright polled more than 600 corporate counsels representing companies on issues related to disputes. As we all know, preventing, managing, and negotiating business disputes are an important component of running a business. If you become involved in a business dispute, it is crucial that you contact a highly competent business attorney to advise you and provide you with viable options.

The 2016 Litigation Trends Survey

Since its inception in 2004, the Litigation Trends Survey is the largest report on corporate counsel litigation issues and trends, with over 600 respondents from a wide range of industry sectors. This year’s survey involved 24 countries. Most respondents showed evidence of an upward trend in almost all areas associated with litigation and other disputes.

According to Gerry Pecht, Norton Rose Fulbright’s Global Head of Dispute Resolution and Litigation, “We see the trend of businesses becoming more proactive in how they assess and control litigation exposure.” He went on to explain that the survey reports litigation minimization measures being taken by companies facing disputes as a step towards reducing litigation risks and costs.

Highlights of the Survey

As expected, the report shows a parallel between a company’s revenue and its litigation spending. The median of litigation spending is one-tenth of one percent of a company’s total revenue. Other important data gleaned from the report include the following:

  1. Twenty-four percent of respondents expect a rise in litigation during the next year; only 13 percent expect a decrease. 
  2. Eighty-one percent of respondents reported being sued during the past year, an increase of 6 percent (from 19 percent to 25 percent).
  3. There was an increase in respondents who required a cross-border discovery this year from 35 percent to 41 percent. In fact, the number of respondents who needed to conduct a cross-border discovery in more than half of their matters doubled, reaching 14 percent.
  4. While 97 percent of respondents felt that regulators had intervened more during the last year, the number of companies not facing any regulatory proceedings (66 percent) showed little change.
  5. Litigation related to contracts remains the most numerous type of litigation (40 percent). It is also the top concern of respondents.
  6. Sixty percent of respondents used alternative fee arrangements and 97 percent of those doing so were well-satisfied, citing greater efficiency and control.

Clearly, business disputes are becoming more frequent and business litigation is a time-consuming and costly part of the business world. It is always best to be prepared by having a first-rate business attorney on board to protect your reputation as well as your profit margin.