At a recent settlement conference in federal court, the presiding judge read both parties a quote at the start of the process and asked the parties to name the source of the quote.
Here’s the quote:
Discourage litigation. Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can. Point out to them how the nominal winner is often a real loser — in fees, expenses, and waste of time. As a peacemaker the lawyer has a superior opportunity of being a good man. There will still be business enough.
It’s none other than Abraham Lincoln, as part of his Notes from a Law Lecture.
His words from 150 years ago still ring true today. For more about how deciding to settle (or fight) can be a smart business decision, see this recent post.