The use of the civil courts can be very public

Students who are familiar with the highs and lows of the music industry may relate to this potentially high profile case.

We often try to explain to students that one of the disadvantages of litigating in the courts is, as every lawyer will tell you, the uncertainty of the outcome – no matter how confident you are you can never guarantee the outcome. In addition it's a little bit like 'washing your dirty linen in public'. Civil litigation is about winning and not losing, so there can be little incentive to compromise and it seems only natural to try and rubbish the other side as much as possible in order to advance your own case. It can damage working relationships irreparably and sometimes this means that businesses often find it difficult to work together in the future and for this reason alternative ways of resolving a dispute are often explored (Alternative Dispute Resolution or ADR).

One of the advantages of the use of ADR is that the method agreed upon can be conducted in private as opposed to the very public arena of the adversarial system adopted in the courts.


A case which seems to be embarking upon the very public route of litigation is the reported legal action between former Oasis member Liam Gallagher and his brother Noel over allegations concerning Liam's ability to perform at a music festival due to a medical condition. How such a legal action will fair in the 'beady eye' of the media, remains to be seen but the case may well serve as a useful and timely reminder of some of the pitfalls that surround litigation. Many will remember the stormy and public tiffs between the brothers during their careers.

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