Resolution of Business Disputes

If an NRI owns Business in India or involved in a venture or organization, you’re well aware that conflict can rear its ugly head in your professional world. It could take the shape of a contract dispute, a dispute over a verbal agreement, or perhaps a conflict with or within your labor force. You might need a "divorce" from a longtime business partner and friend

And if you’re close to any of these points, you and your opposing parties may only see one path going forward: a long, expensive, public and arduous litigation process.

Unfortunately business disputes are common in India and recourse for U.S. firms that offshore services here can be limited. Although the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi is not able to initiate any collection or legal action, it can address impediments to U.S. exports and protect U.S. business interests overseas. As the point of contact for business disputes, the Department of Commerce (DOC) provides guidance for filing complaints. In general, a complaint must address promotion of U.S. exports and protection of U.S. business interests overseas. Please note that they primarily encourage direct communication between disputing parties leading to an amicable solution.

Generally speaking, the DOC handles complaints when:

A U.S. export or U.S. business interest is at stake. Post considers the case merits U.S. assistance and the host government is unwilling to provide assistance to the host firm. Post can maintain or strengthen important local contacts. Post determines that involvement with collection agencies, consultants, or other representatives is appropriate, a U.S. export or local U.S. business interest is at stake, and resources are available. the host firm inquiry is related to a commercial transaction with a U.S. company and/or U.S. commercial interest to be served.

The DOC DOES NOT handle complaints when:

Disputes involve less than $1000. the complainant has made no effort to resolve the dispute. either party is represented by legal counsel. complaints are capricious or where the complainant is considered irresponsible. issue or complaint is raised by a foreign government on behalf of a foreign firm. the dispute involves a tourist complaint. collection cases involve non-payment and there is no other commercial dispute involved. (As a general rule, the CS does not provide assistance to most collection cases.)

Some of the business controversies that NRI accept involve:

  • Breach of contract (vendors, customers, business-to-business)
  • Breach of fiduciary duty
  • Franchise litigation
  • Stockbroker misconduct (churning, unsuitable investments, etc.)
  • Partnership disputes
  • Business dissolution
  • Professional responsibility litigation
  • Fraud and unfair competition
  • Construction disputes among builders, subcontractors and home owners
  • Non-compete agreements/restrictive covenants
  • Supply agreement disputes
  • Service agreement disputes
  • Insurance coverage controversies
  • Commercial real estate disputes
  • Disputes involving two businesses
  • Claims by employees for wrongful treatment by employers
  • Class action cases involving consumers and commercial transactions