Negotiating Tip: The 85% Rule
Lawyers know there is no such thing as a slam-dunk case.
Even the most straight-forward case, like a suit on a promissory note (an “IOU”), can have twists and turns you don’t expect. I’ve had defendant’s argue over the words of the note and the size of the typeface. I have one now where the defendant argued that her note should be canceled by the court because she didn’t receive consideration for it. She lost. I got a judgment. She’s appealing the judgment.
Even in what you may think is a slam-dunk case, there is still a 15% chance that something can go wrong. Your case is continued, a witness doesn’t show up, the judge is having a bad day or the case is appealed. And add to uncertainty, time and attorney fees.
So we have what we call the 85% rule at our office. If you offered 85% by settlement instead of trial, take it.