What is commercial litigation?

Any legal action taken that involves a corporate party is commercial litigation. This includes anything from employment issues and contract disputes to major cases between large international companies. Commercial litigation is a branch of civil litigation, rather than criminal, and like most areas of law, there are highly trained solicitors who are experts in the various fields of commercial litigation who can work with you to receive the best result in your case.

Examples of what can be considered commercial litigation include, but are not limited to:

  • Employment cases
  • Debt recovery
  • Breach of contract
  • Shareholder issues
  • Tax disputes

Although litigation may seem like the only option when you discuss your case with a solicitor, they are likely to advise Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

Taking a case to court is typically the last resort, it is time-consuming, expensive and can add unnecessary stress to all involved. Before a case reaches this, an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) route is preferred, such as adjudication or mediation.

Using one of these methods helps the parties to settle the dispute outside of court, providing a beneficial remedy that can be more specific and adaptable to the matter at hand. Not all ADR is legally binding, so it is always important to discuss the advantages and disadvantages with your solicitor.


Arguably the fastest method of ADR, adjudication takes on average, 28 days to complete. The cases of both parties are presented to an adjudicator through a referral notice or response. From here, the solution will be decided and communicated back to the parties without the need for a hearing where evidence is orally presented.


You do not need to wait until the process of litigation begins to appoint a mediator. They will work with parties to find a solution that both can agree to based on the facts and evidence they are presented with. If you are wishing to continue your relationship with the other party, mediation is likely to be suggested, where appropriate, by your solicitor.


Unlike many other forms of ADR, the decision reached during arbitration is typically legally binding. The third-party arbitrator can be instructed by a relevant professional body or selected by either party. Their role is to listen and view all evidence presented to them before making a decision that is then legally binding on both parties.

To discuss this, or any other related matter, please contact Jane directly on 01483 887766, email info@hartbrown.co.uk or start a live chat today.

*This is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.


Jane Crosby

Partner, Head of Dispute Resolution & Accredited Mediator

Jane is a Partner based in the Guildford office and she is also Head of the Dispute Resolution team here at Hart Brown. Jane specialises...

Jane Crosby -Head of Dispute Resolution

Partner, Head of Dispute Resolution & Accredited Mediator

Jane Crosby

Jane is a Partner based in the Guildford office and she is also Head of the Dispute Resolution team here at Hart Brown. Jane specialises in employment Law and commercial litigation and brings more than 15 years' experience to her role.

Prior to entering the legal profession, Jane was employed in the aviation industry. This experience is appreciated by many of Jane's clients who note that she is able to take a commercial and pragmatic approach to any legal issue that they face.

Jane acts for a wide range of individuals and businesses and her areas of specialism include aviation, property related industries and IT. Jane regularly advises on aspects of employment law, such as settlement agreements, employment contracts, policies and procedures, redundancies, equal pay, data protection, issues arising from TUPE and reorganisations, the calculation of holiday pay, bonus and commission payments, disciplinary and grievance issues, dismissal and termination issues, the protection of confidential information and the enforcement of restrictive covenants. Jane gets involved in GDPR training for her clients and she is able to deliver tailored employment law training sessions upon request.

As a commercial litigation lawyer, Jane also deals in shareholder and directors disputes, commercial contract disputes and the enforcement of restrictive covenants.

Jane has been involved in successful high value commercial litigation for clients in the High Courts, she is an accredited mediator and she is a member of the Employment Lawyers Association.

Jane is often asked to write for a number of well known publications, including The Daily Mail, The Telegraph and The Week and she has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4.

Here is small selection of the feedback that Jane has received:

“Jane, I cannot sincerely thank you enough for your wise counsel and am delighted to have made your acquaintance. If I am blessed with a new position somewhere I will hand over my contract in the first instance to you. Likewise, any of my friends, peers, romans and countrymen wanting advice, I will point them in your direction.”

“Jane, you have been most resilient on my behalf for which I sincerely thank you for all your endeavours. I have a tremendous working relationship with Hart Brown and you have undoubtedly compounded this further."

“I appreciated the clarity of advice given at a stressful time”.

“A sensitive and highly professional approach and efficient work in the interests of the client”.

“Your advice, conduct and assistance have been indeed outstanding and very professional but also – and most importantly – very humane”.