Common Causes of Business Disputes in California

business disputes

There are many reasons a business might become involved in a dispute that would lead to litigation. Some of the more common causes of business disputes in California often involve one or more of the following:

  • Contract disputes: Disputes can arise over the terms of contracts between businesses or between a business and its customers, suppliers, or employees. These can include disputes over payment, delivery, performance, and breach of contract.
  • Employment disputes: Disputes can arise between a business and its employees, such as wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment, and wage and hour violations.
  • Partnership disputes: Disputes can arise between partners in a business, such as disagreements over management, ownership, profits, and dissolution.
  • Intellectual property disputes: Disputes can arise over intellectual property such as trademarks, patents, copyrights, and trade secrets, such as infringement, misappropriation, and unfair competition.
  • Regulatory and compliance issues: Businesses may face litigation over violations of federal or state regulations, such as environmental laws, consumer protection laws, or antitrust laws.
  • Securities litigation: Businesses may face litigation over securities laws violations, such as insider trading, securities fraud, or disclosure violations.
  • Business torts: Disputes can arise over intentional or negligent acts that harm a business, such as defamation, fraud, interference with business relationships, or unfair competition.
  • Product liability: Businesses may face litigation over injuries or damages caused by their products, such as defective products or inadequate warnings.

Possible Remedies in Business Litigation Matters

A business dispute can result in any number of remedies – much of it depends on the dispute. If you are seeking a remedy via negotiation, settlement, or litigation, it could include one of the remedies described below. 


This is the most common remedy in business litigation. Damages are awarded as a monetary compensation to the injured party to compensate for the harm caused by the other party’s breach of contract, negligence, or other wrongful conduct.

Specific Performance

This remedy is used when damages are not an adequate remedy or when the injured party wants to enforce the performance of a contract. The court orders the party to perform their obligations under the contract as agreed.


An injunction is a court order that prohibits a party from engaging in certain conduct or requires them to take certain action. In business litigation, an injunction may be used to stop a party from engaging in unfair competition or to enforce a non-compete clause in an employment contract.

Rescission or Reformation

Rescission involves canceling a contract and returning the parties to their pre-contract position. Reformation involves rewriting a contract to correct a mistake or clarify its terms.

Punitive Damages

These damages are awarded in addition to compensatory damages to punish the other party for egregious conduct. Punitive damages are typically only awarded in cases of intentional or reckless wrongdoing.

Declaratory Judgment

This remedy is used when there is a dispute over the interpretation of a contract or other legal issue. The court issues a declaratory judgment that declares the legal rights and obligations of the parties involved.