Businessmen do not litigate. They have better things to do. They mediate. They have businesses to run. They cannot spend months in trial preparation and then a week or more in the trial itself. And then possibly more time on post-trial motions and appeals. Not to speak of attorney fees and court costs.
No. There are sales to make, contracts to sign, loans to secure. Litigation is paralysis.
In 2007 (the earliest full year for which data exist) Tennessee concluded 20,051 trials (419 by jury, and 19,632 by judge trial only). In 2016 Tennessee concluded 15,278 trials (269 by jury and 15,009 by judge trial only). This means that over this space of ten years resolutions by trial fell off by 4773 cases, or some twenty-four percent.
The lion’s share of the decline, in my opinion, is due to increased mediation in these ten years.