Ignoring a civil demand letter may be tempting.
Thankfully, you just took your first step toward resolution.
Ignoring a civil demand letter from an attorney is a mistake. Certainly, civil demand letters are a standard part of doing business in today’s economy. To clarify, a civil demand letter from an attorney is basically a demand that you cease some behavior or business activity because it violates their rights or a claim for payment. In short, a demand letter seeking payment usually includes:
- How much you owe,
- why you owe it,
- and a deadline by which you need to comply to avoid a lawsuit.
On the other hand, a “cease and desist” demand letter will claim that you are engaging in some improper business practice. For example, it may allege misappropriation of trade secrets, tortious interference, or business disparagement. In other words, it demands that you change or stop your behavior.
Why are civil demand letters sent?
Common reasons include:
- past-due payments for loans, trade accounts, or purchase agreements
- unfair, deceptive or otherwise improper business practices
- employment or personal injury claims
- failure to make lease or mortgage payments
- pre-litigation notices required by an agreement or statute
Will ignoring a civil demand letter make it go away?
Ignoring civil demand letters may be tempting. But don’t. Here’s why:
- Firstly, you will very likely end up in a lawsuit and miss the opportunity for early resolution.
- Secondly, judges and juries do not appreciate those who ignore civil demand letters that assert a legitimate claim.
- Your non-response to the demand letter from an attorney may be considered evidence of intentional wrongdoing or willful violation of the other party’s rights.
- Moreover, penalty provisions and attorney’s fees may substantially increase the amount you owe.
- In addition, for a “cease and desist” letter, failure to change your conduct may result in a restraining order against you.
But here’s the good news…
You probably want to avoid the uncertainty and expense of litigation. Likewise, your creditors typically do, too. As an experienced business attorney, I can find the vulnerabilities in their claim against you, using that to negotiate from a position of strength, not weakness.
…and the better news.
Don’t accept the demand letter claims at face value without consulting an attorney. For instance, there may be hidden issues that invalidate the claim against you. For example, I have frequently achieved success for my clients who have received civil demand letters by exploiting contract terms, thoroughly researching and using relevant law, and leveraging strong negotiating tactics. After settlement, I ensure that the final agreements appropriately protect my clients’ interests and do not contain traps for the unwary.
Contact me now.
In conclusion, don’t underestimate the need for prompt professional legal advice. I can help to ensure that your response to the demand letter protects your rights and interests. Call me today at 612-741-4732, and I’ll connect with you as soon as possible.