Construction Contracts

News & Analysis as of

Security of Payment and the rise of the contractual reference date

The recent Supreme Court of NSW decision by Ball J in Fairfield City Council v Abergeldie Contractors Pty Ltd1 (Abergeldie), provides another demonstration of how issues with reference dates2 can provide potent grounds for...more

Rhode Island Supreme Court Rules That Despite Deference Afforded Arbitrator, the Award Must Be Vacated Where Arbitrator’s Decision...

Nappa Constr. Mgmt., LLC v. Flynn, 2017 R.I. LEXIS 13 (R.I. Jan. 23, 2017) - Caroline and Vincent Flynn (the “Flynns”) contracted with Nappa Construction Management, LLC (“Nappa”) to construct an automobile repair...more

Under Construction - March 2017

Letter from the Editor - Welcome to the spring 2017 edition of our Under Construction newsletter. We hope 2017 is off to a good start for you and your company. An issue that seems to commonly come up in cost-plus...more

Construction Liens in Florida – The Timing and Manner of Perfection are Critical

Among the hottest and most relevant blog and article topics is the subject of construction liens. No matter the quantity or ubiquity of such articles, construction liens are and will always be among the most highly discussed...more

Yellow is signalled

The second edition of FIDIC's Yellow Book (Conditions for Plant and Design Build) is due to be released in the coming months. It was pre-launched at the FIDIC annual conference in December, and review of a "conference...more

Federal Court in California Rules That the Federal Arbitration Act Preempts California Statute That Requires Arbitrations Relating...

Bell Prods. v. Hosp. Bldg. & Equip. Co., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 9183 (ND of Cal. Jan. 23, 2017) - A Contractor, Hospital Building and Equipment Company (“HBE”) entered into a subcontract with a mechanical subcontractor,...more

NEC4 is on its way

The next generation of NEC contracts – the NEC4 suite – is due to be launched on 22 June 2017 at the NEC Users' Group Annual Seminar 2017....more

The Second Edition of the SCL Delay and Disruption Protocol

The Society of Construction Law ('SCL') has just published the Second Edition of its Delay and Disruption Protocol. Background - The SCL Delay and Disruption Protocol was first published in 2002. Its stated...more

Changes to your Scope of Services on the Construction Project (law note)

Our office is in the middle of a large renovation. It’s been several months of drilling, sawing, painting, carpeting– you name it. I’m proud to say that we have had not one change to the scope of work during that time.....more

Agree to use your “professional best” ? You may lose insurance coverage! (law note)

Yesterday, I was part of a panel at the NC Bar Association Construction Law Winter Meeting, discussing insurance issues for design professionals. ...more

Missouri appellate court opens the door to Spearin claims by contractors against public entities

A Missouri appellate court has for the first time recognized that a construction contractor may pursue a breach of contract claim against a public entity owner based on the “Spearin doctrine,” meaning the contractor may...more

Lessons from November and December of 2016 That Will Help You Get Off to a Great Start in 2017

From the time that I was in elementary school through my years in law school, my grandfather always stressed the importance of getting off to a good start each new academic year. The importance of a good start is just as...more

New North Carolina Sales Tax Provisions for Contracts Related to Real Property

This alert is relevant for contractors who perform construction services on real property in the state of North Carolina. In South Carolina, contractors remain subject to the traditional sales or use tax at the time of all...more

The Construction Industry Scheme: Change in the air?

What does real estate investment have to do with the problem of tax evasion made possible by cash-in-hand payments in the building industry? Very little, one might suspect, but that has not prevented real estate investors...more

Construction One-Minute Read: Preparing Change Orders

Because change orders are ubiquitous in the construction industry, they are often prepared with less scrutiny and attention to detail than is needed. Each change order is intended to be a modification to the original (prime...more

Serving contractual notices: wrong method, right result

Contracts usually stipulate for specific requirements that need to be carefully followed in serving contractual notices, failing which serious issues may arise. Two recent cases highlight the courts' approach to notice...more

JAMS Global Construction Solutions Newsletter, Spring 2017

Reallocation Actions and Settlement Agreements: What Did We Settle? - The purpose of a settlement and release agreement is to fully and finally dispose of a disputed matter. However, more and more often, a dispute cannot...more

Building a Favorable Project Record During Construction Disputes

The value and importance of the written record in a dispute arising from a major construction project cannot be overstated. Even when project personnel are available to provide first-hand accounts—which often is challenging...more

They threatened to sue! What do I do? (Law note on construction disputes)

I just spent some time answering emails from folks worried because they’ve been threatened with a lawsuit over a construction project gone bad. They want to know: Can they do that? What can they get? But what...more

Construction Defect – Application of the Right to Repair Statute to Material Suppliers

The Right to Repair Statute in California requires a homeowner show a breach of contract or negligence to succeed. Acqua Vista Homeowners Association v. MWI, Inc. - California Court of Appeals, Fourth Appellate...more

Texas Court of Appeals Holds That Owner’s Change to Contractor’s Means and Methods Resulted in a “Breach,” Instead of a “Change”...

Port of Houston Auth. of Harris Cnty. v. Zachry Constr. Corp., 2016 Tex. App. LEXIS 13306 (Tex. App. Houston 14th Dist. Dec. 15, 2016) - This contract dispute dates back to 2004, when the Port of Houston Authority...more

When Construction Contracts Go Sideways in Bankruptcy

The contractor on a project files a bankruptcy case. How should the property owner and subcontractors proceed? When a party to a contract files bankruptcy, the other party’s actions are constrained by the bankruptcy code....more

Status quo Returns: the High Court Weighs in on Reference Dates and the NSW Court of Appeal Clears up the Grounds for Challenge

The decisions of the High Court in Southern Han Breakfast Point Pty Ltd (In Liq) v Lewence Construction Pty Ltd [2016] HCA 52 and the New South Wales Court of Appeal in Shade Systems Pty Ltd v Probuild Constructions (Aust)...more

Contractor not liable following tunnel collapse

A recent Scottish case absolved a contractor from liability for the collapse of a tunnel as part of a hydroelectric scheme. This was because the contractor exercised reasonable skill and care, and did not guarantee the...more

The Importance of Construction Contracts and Items to Consider When Preparing Construction Contracts

It's important for parties entering into any significant economic transaction to have written contracts.  This is especially true for construction projects which are, by their nature, complicated.  A contract on a...more

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