Man meeting with attorney to resolve legal dispute.

Considering Litigation? Watch Out for Icebergs Ahead

In the early morning hours of April 15, 1912, the unsinkable Titanic went to her watery grave. More than 1,500 died, making the shipwreck one of the worst peacetime disasters of all time. Part of what makes the Titanic’s fate so tragic, is that its sinking could have been avoided. The same can be said for a lot of litigation and legal disputes, which is why pre-trial legal work matters in every single case.

Warnings Ignored 

Around noon on April 14, the Titanic’s radio operators received the first of several cautionary messages about large ice floes just ahead. Another message came in that evening from a ship that reported three icebergs just 19 miles north of the Titanic’s path. Finally, just one hour before the Titanic’s fateful collision, a nearby vessel named the Californian messaged “We are stopped and surrounded by ice.” 

The captain’s response to all of these warnings? Full steam ahead. He and the company he worked for were more concerned about setting a transatlantic crossing speed record than icebergs. Plus, the ship was supposed to be unsinkable. 

Iceberg Ahead

When the crew saw the iceberg looming, they did what they could. They shut off all the engines, dropped the watertight doors in the bottom compartments, and attempted to turn the ship to the side so it wouldn’t hit the iceberg straight on. But it was too late. The portion of the iceberg hiding under the water scraped a hole in the side of the ship.

Many of us go through life like the captain of the Titanic. We know there are icebergs out there, but we have other things to worry about. We think we are invincible, and if we see an iceberg we will have time to turn. But we forget that icebergs are not chunks of ice floating on top of the water. They are massive blocks that mostly float below the surface. Only a small portion of an iceberg is visible above the water. 

Legal Disputes Are Like Icebergs

Legal disputes are a lot like icebergs. The part you can’t see is often more important than the part you can. It’s the pre-trial stuff that sinks most cases. 

Although a lot of people imagine the day they will go to court and have their case heard by a judge and jury, the reality is only a very small percentage of cases actually go to trial. Most cases are resolved by settlement or even dismissed. This means the work that occurs before either party steps foot in the courthouse is perhaps the most important. 

Doing discovery, facilitating mediation, and discretely settling disputes is what we do best. While other attorneys live for litigation, we feel that if a case goes that far something has gone seriously wrong. Most disputes can be resolved behind closed doors, in a cost-effective manner. 

If you are looking for a law firm that is focused on resolving your dispute, not making headlines with it, Human Alchemy may be able to help. Our experienced team of attorneys can help you avoid any icebergs, and smoothly sail forward. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.