Attorneys often argue to a Court that, if the Court does something in the future, a particular result will follow.
For such"future" arguments, which is correct?:
A. If the Court grants the motion, then the defendant will go out of business.
B. If the Court were to grant the motion, then ....
Does it matter if one is arguing for or against the Court granting the motion? I.e., if I don't want the Court to grant the motion, do I use "were"?
I think "A" is correct, because the attorney wants to argue that if x happens, y will happen and, then argue that X is bad. Not that y may happen.
My colleague (and many attorneys I've spoke with) thinks B is correct because by using the subjunctive, it indicates that we don't want the Court to do "x". By using the indicative, they argue, it suggests that the future event is necessarily going to occur.