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…is the message from a recent survey.

Clients want their litigators to be less aggressive
Commercial litigators are seriously misjudging their client’s approach to disputes, with many assuming they should take an aggressively adversarial approach, while those instructing them would prefer collaboration with the other side.

Findings from a long-running international survey revealed yesterday that, while 46 per cent of regular users of dispute resolution want their legal teams to work collaboratively with the other party, nearly 60 per cent of litigators had the view that clients wanted them to be robust advocates.

The research comes from the Global Pound Conference series, a survey of more than 5,000 clients and lawyers in 31 countries. The research has been ongoing since last March and will culminate with a conference in London in July.

Other results so far show that 48 per cent of clients and 38 per cent of lawyers maintain that changes in legislation that improve the enforcement of settlements is the most important issue in dispute resolution.

Also, 55 per cent of lawyers see the outcome of disputes as driven by the rule of law, while 53 per cent of mediators and conciliators argue that the driving factor should be consensus.

Among those sponsoring the research project are Herbert Smith Freehills, the City of London law firm, the Singapore International Dispute Resolution Academy and PwC, the “big four” accountancy practice.