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Civil litigation can cover a wide range of potential types of disagreements.

These can include:

  • Builder and surveyor disputes
  • Contract disputes or breach of contract
  • Faulty goods 
  • Defamation
  • Employment disputes
  • Financial miss-selling 
  • Housing disrepair disputes
  • Land, boundary and property disputes
  • Landlord and tenant disputes
  • Neighbour disputes

Civil litigation is a complicated area of law that often raises novel legal questions. No case is the same and it is sometimes difficult for a layperson to properly evaluate their position. In English law, it is also presumed that the losing party will pay the winning party’s costs. It is therefore very important before starting any civil dispute to get proper legal advice on the merits of a claim to avoid risking an unnecessary adverse costs order.

Experienced civil litigation lawyers

At Specters, we have years of experience in all types of civil disputes. We will be able to properly advise you on your prospects of success and whether you should pursue your claim further. We will always give comprehensive and candid advice, even if it is not necessarily what you as the client wants to hear. On the other hand, if we think your claim has merit, we have the necessary expertise to manage the claims process and achieve a successful outcome.

There is no standard way a civil dispute will evolve. Often it will depend on how the defendant responds to the claim. If we feel that a defendant is receptive to settlement, we may suggest mediation or some other form of alternative dispute resolution. If the defendant is more intransigent, we may advise that you issue court proceedings. We know that every case is unique and we will always involve you as the client in key strategic decisions.

Time limits

There are strict time limits for pursuing a civil litigation case. However, the time periods differ vastly depending on the area of dispute. For contractual or negligence disputes, the time limit will be six years from either the breach of contract and/or six years from the date the damage accrues in negligence. For a defamation claim, the time limit will be one year from the date of the date of publication of the libellous information. For employment cases, a claim must be submitted either to the tribunal or ACAS within 3 months.

These periods are difficult to calculate precisely and may vary from case to case – we always advise clients to contact us as soon as they suspect they may have a claim to avoid the risk of being time barred.


Once we have assessed your claim, we can offer a number of funding options, which you can read more about on our funding page here.

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