Construction Contracts

News & Analysis as of

DOL Issues Final Rule on Enforcement of Contractors' Minimum Wage Executive Order

On October 1, 2014, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued its "Final Rule" on enforcement of Executive Order No.13658: Minimum Wage for Contractors, which was signed by President Obama on February 12, 2014.The Executive Order...more

The Construction Advantage – Issue 10

Wyoming Supreme Court Concludes Contractor to Pay For Damages In Excess of Original Project Cost - An opinion released in a mid-August from the Wyoming Supreme Court concluded that repair damages were appropriate in a...more

Lakewood Passes Construction Defect Action Reform

On October 13, 2014, Lakewood’s City Council passed Ordinance O-2014-21, which reforms the process for handling construction defect claims on condominium projects in the City of Lakewood. The ordinance has three primary...more

City of Lakewood Adopts Ordinance to Encourage Condominium Construction and Reduce Construction Defect Litigation

On Monday, October 13, 2014, the City of Lakewood became the first Colorado municipality to adopt legislation intended to encourage construction of “for sale” multifamily projects by mitigating the risks to developers and...more

No Damage for Delay Clauses Have Limits on Louisiana Public Works Projects

The Louisiana Public Works Act prohibits “no damage for delay” clauses in contracts for publicly bid projects. Recently, the State of Louisiana tested the boundaries of that prohibition by including a provision in a public...more

Bankruptcy by the Developer/Owner: Mechanics Lien Rights May Still Prevail!

The rate of bankruptcies among construction industry participants is higher than some think. The bankruptcy of a developer creates an “automatic stay” under federal law preventing almost all collection activities, including...more

California Takes Significant Strides Toward Design-Build

New Law Consolidates Certain Design-Build Authorizations Under a Single Statute - The adoption of Senate Bill 785 signifies strong movement toward authorizing design-build procurement in California at the state and...more

Patent Rights in Government Contracts

Patents are often a company’s most important asset. Thus, when a company is contracting with the federal government, that company needs to proceed with caution to avoid loss of patent rights. Government contracts can cover...more

Construction Case Law Update - October 2014 #2

Disputes over a mediation agreement’s validity must be resolved prior to a court ruling on discovery requests regarding matters potentially settled by the agreement. A dispute arose after Jilco, Inc. (“Jilco”) subleased a...more

Enforcing Notice Provisions in Construction Contracts in the United States

Notice provisions are a key part of construction contracts. These provisions typically require a contractor to notify the owner of the project (or an owner-designated representative) when the contractor believes that it is...more

When Your General Contractor Files Bankruptcy

The case is Branch Banking & Trust Co. v. Construction Supervision Services Inc. (In re Construction Supervision Services Inc.), 753 F.3d 124 (4th Cir. 2014). After a general contractor filed bankruptcy, several of its...more

Mechanic’s Lien Reigns Supreme in the Battle of a Project Default? Not for a Waiving General

In what can only be described as a devastating result for a general contractor, the Fourth Appellate District held that a general contractor may prospectively waive the priority of a mechanic’s lien to the owner’s...more

Contractors: Beware the Subordination Clause

Did you know that California is the only state in the country in which mechanics liens are a constitutional right? Tis true. Article XIV of the California Constitution states: Mechanics, persons furnishing...more

Texas Supreme Court Orders 10/14 (Six Petitions Granted)

Because there are no opinions and no grants in the Supreme Court's order list this morning, this is a good opportunity for me to do the promised post on the petitions granted in the October 3, 2014 order list. ...more

Proposed Changes to Pennsylvania Mechanics’ Lien Law Would Provide for Internet-Based Directory to Serve as a Standardized...

Pending House Bill 473 seeks to amend the current lien law by creating a centralized construction notices registry in Pennsylvania known as the State Construction Notices Directory (“Directory”), which would provide owners...more

Mechanics Liens — Smart Tools of Construction Industry Professionals, and Bane of Property Owners

In 1791, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison proposed the first mechanics liens legislation in order to promote development in Washington. The Maryland Assembly (which governed Washington at that time) passed the...more

Pennsylvania Supreme Court Determines Implied Warranty of Habitability Does Not Extend to Subsequent Purchasers

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court is now the latest state court to weigh in on the issue of whether a subsequent purchaser of a previously inhabited residence can recover contract damages from a builder or general contractor for...more

Final Rule Raising Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors

The Secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Thomas Perez, recently issued the final rule raising the minimum wage for workers on federal service and construction contracts to $10.10 per hour. The final rule enacts...more

Required Contract Provisions for Construction Contracts in California

One question I get fairly often when drafting or reviewing construction contracts is what provisions, if any, are required in construction contracts in California. This is, of course, different than what should be included in...more

Construction Case Law Update - October 2014

Applying the Ameris factors, the Middle District of Florida abstained from and dismissed indemnitor’s declaratory judgment action to determine indemnity provision’s (1) scope, (2) duty to defend against third-party...more

Condo Developers Getting Relief From Washington

In an uncharacteristic bipartisan style, the House of Representatives of the U.S. Congress passed H.R. 2600 on September 26, 2013, and almost a year later, on September 19, 2014, the Senate followed by enacting S.2101....more

Louisiana Public Bid Law Update: Two Big Wins in the Louisiana First Circuit for Unsuccessful Bidders Disputing Public Bid Awards

Last month, the Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal issued two decisions in favor of unsuccessful bidders on public projects. In Phylway Const., LLC v. Terrebonne Parish Consol. Government, 2013-1589 (La. App. 1...more

Major Step Forward for California Design-Build: SB 785 Signed September 30, 2014

With the enactment of Senate Bill 785, the State of California has taken a major step forward in authorizing state and local agencies to use design-build. Although many California agencies have the ability to use...more

A Recent Reminder of the Sovereign Acts Doctrine

The sovereign acts doctrine provides that the federal government, when sued as a contractor, cannot be held liable for an obstruction to the performance of the particular contract resulting from its public and general acts as...more

Yes, Indeedy. Competitive Bidding Not Required for School District Lease-Leasebacks

Remember when you discovered that the tooth fairy wasn’t real? It was kind of a bummer on one hand learning that it wasn’t a fairy that magically appeared to swap your tooth for cold hard cash, but rather your mom or,...more

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