General Contractors

News & Analysis as of

Interpreting Arbitration Agreements: Two Key Points from Recent Texas Supreme Court Decisions

The Texas Supreme Court recently added another opinion to its ever-growing body of law interpreting arbitration agreements. The opinion falls in line with prior decisions on two key issues: 1. what amounts to waiver of the...more

NLRB Discusses Joint Employment for the First Time Since Browning-Ferris

The National Labor Relations Board, in one of its first applications of the Browning-Ferris decision, gave hope to non-union contracting entities engaged in franchising and subcontracting relationships. After an extensive...more

“Contractor?” I Do Not Think That Employers’ Liability Exclusion Means What You Think It Means

Over the summer, this blog reported on how the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania managed to parse an employer’s liability exclusion to find that it did not exclude claims by employees of additional insureds. As the leaves started...more

Managing Project Risk With Enforceable Indemnity Agreements

Most contracts in the construction industry supply chain require the “downstream” project participant to indemnify those “upstream” against a spectrum of losses or claims relating to the project. Upstream participants, such...more

2015-2016 California Labor & Employment Laws Affecting Construction Industry

Assembly Bill 219 – Prevailing Wages for Concrete Delivery on Public Projects - AB 219 continues California’s aggressive expansion of prevailing wages. This bill expands the definition of “public works” for purposes of...more

Bar Against Forum Selection Clauses in Construction Contracts Extended to Design Professionals

It’s a tactic as old as war itself. You can often gain a strategic advantage by selecting the location of battle. The same is true in litigation....more

Update: SBA Proposed Rule and Size Protest on a Task Order

This update will briefly cover a size protest on a task order (with a basic review) and a proposed SBA rule regarding other than small prime contractors getting small business credit for awards made to small business...more

Oregon Court of Appeals Holds Engineer Must Provide Property Owner with Notice of Lien Rights in Order to Perfect and Foreclose on...

In Multi/Tech Engineering Services, Inc. v. Innovative Design & Construction, LLC [274 Or App 389 (2015)], the Oregon Court of Appeals held that an engineer was required to provide a property owner with notice of lien rights...more

Recent Decisions Highlight Severe Consequences To Contractors Working Without A License

Most contractors understand the importance of a contractor’s license. Two recent decisions highlight the severe penalties imposed against contractors who failed to closely follow the license requirements. One case involved a...more

Federal District Court in Florida Holds that Contract Provision Giving General Contractor Discretion to Apportion Damages Does Not...

Davis Group, Inc. v. Ace Electric, Inc., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 83368 (M.D. Fla. June 26, 2015) - This action arose out of a construction project to build a new Radar Approach Control Facility at Seymour Johnson Air Force...more

Proving Contractor Licensure in California. The Tribe Has Spoken.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, in California you must “prove” you’re a licensed contractor in a construction case. But in whose hands are you entitled to place your fate  – the judge or the jury?...more

New York Court Holds Disclaimer Letter Untimely

In its recent decision in Endurance American Specialty Ins. Co. v. Utica First Ins. Co., 2015 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 7272 (N.Y. 1st Dep’t Oct. 8, 2015), the New York Appellate Division, First Department, reinforced the rule...more

Construction Defect – Pre-Litigation Procedures of the “Right to Repair Act”

McMillin Albany LLC, et al. v. The Superior Court of Kern County - California Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District (August 26, 2015) - Civil Code section 896 (§ 896) is part of a statutory scheme commonly...more

A Brief Look At Common Construction Loan Credit Enhancements

As the competition for construction loan projects remains at unprecedented levels in much of the country, lenders are frequently being asked to waive, modify or re-visit their standard construction loan credit enhancement...more

Court of Appeal Opens Pandora’s Box on Definition of “Contractor” for Forum Selection Clauses

In Vita Planning and Landscape Architecture, Inc. v. HKS Architects, Inc. (“Vita Planning”), the First Appellate District held California’s Code of Civil Procedure section 410.42 (“Section 410.42”) which prohibits an...more

Contractor Given a Wake-Up Call for Using a "Sham" RMO/RME

Two weeks ago we wrote about a disgorgement case winding its way through the courts where a contractor who let its license lapse after assigning its contract to a related but properly licensed entity was still facing...more

Attorneys Fees Under California’s Prompt Payment Statutes. Contractor’s “Win” Fails the Sniff Test

This past month, the California Court of Appeals for the Third District, in  James L. Harris Painting & Decorating, Inc. v. West Bay Builders, Inc., Case No. C072169 (August 27, 2015), handed down a decision in a construction...more

The Takeaway from Joint Ventures and Florida Licensure: Follow the Rules

Florida's Department of Business and Professional Regulation requires and issues licenses for entities and individuals to qualify to construct improvements to real property in Florida.There are licenses for Certified General...more

Construction & Engineering Alert - September 2015

Interpreting the payment provisions in construction contracts: clarification and guidance provided by the TCC To be effective, an application for payment needs to be free from ambiguity. It should state the sum...more

Playing Hot Potato: Indemnity Strikes Again

Indemnity can be like playing hot potato (for those of you closer to the Minecraft generation, in the game of hot potato, a metaphoric “hot potato” is tossed between (ahem amongst) players while music is playing, and when the...more

California Court of Appeal affirms vitality of California’s Right to Repair Act (SB 800) against construction defect claims

The California Court of Appeal, Fifth District, issued a published opinion last week holding that California’s Right to Repair Act (Act, commonly known in the homebuilding industry as SB 800, applies to all claims by...more

Insurance News, Summer 2015

The U.S. Senate Commerce Committee asked Michael Menapace to testify as an expert witness at a hearing called by the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, Insurance and Data Security entitled, "Examining the...more

Alert: Massachusetts High Court Clarifies Construction Manager’s Role

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court issued a very significant ruling yesterday regarding the use of the CM-At Risk delivery method, particularly on public jobs. In Coghlin Electrical Contractors, Inc. v. Gilbane...more

Citing Erosion of the Privity Doctrine, California Court Permits Homeowner to Pursue Subcontractor for Damages Despite Lack of...

The California Court of Appeals, Second Appellate District, recently held that a building materials supplier owed a duty to a homeowner despite a lack of privity between the two. In Prince v. Thompson Building Materials, 2015...more

The Buck Stops Over There: Have Indemnitors Become the Insurers of First and Last Resort?

Insurance and indemnity are the primary risk management strategies on construction projects. Insurance, such as commercial general liability insurance, insures against third party claims for bodily injury and property damage,...more

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