Minnesota Litigation: Settlement or Trial, Which is Better?

If you are in Minnesota litigation or facing the threat of litigation in Minnesota, you may be wondering whether you should settle your case or take it to trial. Here are a few considerations as you consider what is best for you.

In most cases, it is in the interest of all parties to try to reach some type of settlement resolution before going to trial. However, this depends on your goals. One impediment to goals is emotions.

In Minnesota Litigation, Emotions Can Be Expensive

As you know, emotions can cloud good judgment. Sometimes parties want to go to trial to prove something. They may use comments like

  • I need to teach them a lesson.
  • It’s about the principle.
  • If I don’t stop them, they will do it again to someone else.
  • I would rather spend the money on legal fees than give it to them.

Although these statements may be true, refusing to compromise by reaching some sort of settlement means you may be spending a lot of money in legal fees. It troubles me to see parties overreact based on their emotions, without taking into consideration the substantial financial cost of those actions.

As the saying goes, “some people will cut off their nose to spite their face.” I have seen parties who spend thousands of dollars fighting over something worth $800 “out of the principle of it.” Such cases can often be seen in divorces. Sadly, mom and dad often waste substantial amounts of money fighting each other that could have been spent on their children’s education or other things that would enhance their children’s lives.

Minnesota Lawsuits Statistics

I understand that Minnesota court statistics indicate that roughly one in every 40 cases settled rather than being resolved by trial. This only considers cases that were filed, and in Minnesota, many cases are not filed. Thus, I estimate that less than two percent of the lawsuits in Minnesota are resolved by trial rather than some sort of settlement agreement.

Sometimes, Trials are Necessary

Why do most lawsuit parties eventually settle? Litigation is expensive. Litigation is a distraction from your business. Litigation is a distraction from better things in life. Thus, parties often become more willing to compromise and focus on moving on with their lives as they experience how expensive and bothersome litigation can be.

One of the main reasons to go to trial is if the other side is so unreasonable that you cannot work out a settlement agreement.

We advise our clients on all options throughout our representation. We brainstorm alternatives that may be unconventional, but that accomplish our client’s goals. However, some matters cannot be resolved outside of a trial. In this case, we are ready and willing to go to trial.