In addition to serving as out-of-house counsel for local businesses, Gelber & Associates, PLLC consistently maintains a substantial active commercial litigation docket, enabling us to keep our fingers on the pulse of the local judiciary and, ultimately, better advise our clients as to the anticipated outcome of various legal proceedings.
In commercial ventures, contracts form the foundation of every relationship. Contracts establish the participants’ rights and duties with respect to such variables as quantity, amendment, delivery, compensation, and liability. The well-negotiated contract protects and preserves your business’s interests, assets, and reputation, and a well-drafted contract lets the parties accurately memorialize their agreed-upon terms, thus avoiding misunderstandings down the road. While not everything in commercial law can be thought of in terms of a contract, a well negotiated contract may be that ounce of prevention that saves the need for a pound of cure later on.
Our Firm provides an array of contract-related legal services for Virginia businesses and foreign entities seeking to do business in Virginia. From formulating offers to finalizing negotiations, our attorneys will apply their experience to help your business obtain the best deal on the best terms. And, after an agreement has been reached, we will provide the necessary legal drafting and review to ensure that the written contract comports with Virginia law and provides your business—and you—with the best possible protections. Of course, even when a contract has been carefully negotiated and drawn up, legal disputes can, and do, arise.
Commercial Litigation and Allegations of Fraud
The attorneys at Gelber & Associates, PLLC have extensive experience in handling business litigation that extends well beyond basic contract disputes, and which often involves allegations of fraud (actual or constructive), conversion, civil conspiracy, or other intentional torts. In some cases these disputes arise between businesspeople and their clients. In other cases, the disputes arise between business owners and their employees. And, in some cases, disputes arise when the relationship between businesspeople themselves deteriorates for any of various reasons. Where a business cannot be salvaged, the interested parties must step in and protect rights and limit liabilities, sometimes by ensuring compliance with applicable law, e.g., during a corporate wind-down, and sometimes by suing to compel certain outcomes.
Although valid fraud claims are relatively rare, many plaintiffs will tack allegations of fraud onto their basic contract claims in an attempt to impute personal liability to an individual business owner where personal liability does not actually exist. In addition, a fraud claim may allow a party to seek punitive damages and attorneys’ fees, thus creating a more menacing claim. In Virginia many forms of fraud—e.g., actual fraud, constructive fraud, negligent misrepresentation— as well as defenses to fraud, exist which can be overwhelming and confusing for individuals facing such allegations. However, the requirements for pleading and proving these various claims and defenses have been clearly outlined by Virginia statute and case law, and we are well versed in these areas. As our attorneys have experience in prosecuting and defending a variety of business litigation claims, including various types of fraud, we are well-equipped to explain these areas of the law and work with you to resolve the issues that you, or your business, are facing.
In our commercial practice we have represented international technology firms, government contractors, national banks, federal credit unions, microfinance providers, condominium associations, insurance companies, air travel agencies, general contractors, and other businesses in many other sectors. Because of this diversity of experience we are able to quickly get up to speed on your business practices so that we can better assist you, whatever your commercial needs may be.
Contact us and see if we cannot add value to your process.