Where does your company want to be sued? Of course, the obvious answer is “nowhere.” But in this litigious country that is not realistic. However, to a large extent, companies can chose the forum to decide claims made against them. The choice is not necessarily an easy one, given competing considerations that this article reviews.

First, the available choices should be understood. For contract claims, it is generally possible to designate in the contract the litigation forum. Those choice-of-forum clauses will be upheld, absent some extraordinary circumstances. Of course, this point is limited to contract claims against business entities, not consumers, and may also not always be possible in suits by consumers if the contract designates a truly difficult or distant forum. State laws do limit some overreaching consumer contracts.

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