Construction Contracts

News & Analysis as of

Changes Made to the Pennsylvania Mechanics’ Lien Law to Protect Holders of Open-End Mortgages and Residential Property Owners

Mechanics’ liens grant contractors and subcontractors an interest in improvements made to real property to secure the payment obligations of owners to contractors, and of contractors to subcontractors. While these liens...more

DIR Launches New Mandatory Registration Program for Public Works Projects

The California Department of Industrial Relations (“DIR”) has announced the launch of a new registration program for public works projects authorized by Senate Bill 854, which was signed into law on June 20, 2014, and became...more

Alabama Supreme Court Reverses Course, Finds Insurance Coverage for Faulty Workmanship Claims

Companies such as homebuilders, construction companies and contractors face significant financial risk from bodily injury and property damage claims arising from allegedly faulty workmanship or construction defects. Although...more

Environmental Considerations For School Construction

School construction projects present special challenges and must be carefully managed to ensure that environmental issues are safely and well-handled and the health and safety of the school population is protected. New...more

Proposed "Buy American" Regulations Complicate Doing Business with the State of Maryland

On July 11, 2014, the Maryland Board of Public Works issued a Notice of Proposed Action that proposed new regulations concerning the preference for American-manufactured goods on most public contracts. The regulations, as...more

North Dakota Supreme Court Establishes Defense to “No Damage for Delay” Clause

In June 2014, the North Dakota Supreme Court issued its decision in C&C Plumbing & Heating, LLP v. Williams County et al, No. 20130297. The Court articulated a new defense to the application of a “no damage for delay” clause....more

PTC “Start of Construction” Clarifying Guidance Expected in a Week or Two

General Electric (GE) stated on its quarterly earnings call today that it expected that the clarification to the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) production tax credit (PTC) “start of construction” guidance would be released...more

Insurance Coverage – Duty to Defend – Construction Defects

Regional Steel Corporation v. Liberty Surplus Insurance Corporation - Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District (June 13, 2014) - There has been a split of decisions in California as to whether incorporation of...more

5th Circuit Holds No Duty to Indemnify Based on Contractual Liability Exclusion

In its recent decision in Crownover v. Mid-Continent Cas. Co., 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 12158 (5th Cir. June 27, 2014), the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit had occasion to consider whether the Contractual...more

Ohio Supreme Court Upholds Pay-if-Paid Provisions - “Condition precedent” sufficient to transfer non-payment risk in subcontracts

The Ohio Supreme Court today held that when a subcontract makes payment by a project owner to the general contractor a condition precedent to the general contractor’s obligation to pay the subcontractor — the subcontract...more

California Court of Appeal Allows Taxpayer Lawsuit Against Contractors on Public Works Projects

Public works contractors: Beware of accusations of corruption. In Gilbane Building Company v. Superior Court, 223 Cal.App.4th 1527 (2014), an appellate court cleared the way for taxpayers to sue contractors for engaging in...more

Building Confidence: Consult an Attorney Before Starting the Construction Process

With high-end residential construction again on the rise in Southwest Florida, owners, contractors, subcontractors, design professionals and others should be proactive and mindful of the various statutory requirements and...more

CSLL Does Not Bar Successor Entity’s Compensation Claims After Contractor’s Change of Business Entity During Construction

A recent decision by the California Court of Appeal imposed a sensible limit on the prohibition of compensation claims by unlicensed contractors under the Contractors’ State License Law (“CSLL”), specifically California Bus....more

Massachusetts Superior Court Holds Construction Manager At-Risk Responsible for Design Errors / Holds that Spearin Doctrine Does...

The Worcester Superior Court recently issued a potentially landmark decision clarifying the risk that construction managers assume when entering into CM-At Risk contracts. ...more

Homebuilder Series Webinar: Joint Ventures Solutions, Steve Lear [Video]

This is the second in a series of in-depth webinar discussions that cover a range of legal and business issues affecting the homebuilder industry. Homebuilders frequently use joint ventures as a means to finance...more

Principal Architects on Residential Projects Liable for Construction Defects Outside Their Control; Developers and Owners May Pay...

On July 3, 2014, the California Supreme Court decided the much watched case Beacon Residential Community Assoc. v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP. The court held that the “principal architect” “owes a duty of care to future...more

Surprising Shakeup in Construction Lending: New Law Kisses Kessler Goodbye

On July 9, 2014, Governor Tom Corbett signed into law Act 117 of 2014 which amends the Mechanics’ Lien Law to grant lien priority to open-end mortgages over mechanics’ liens, provided that sixty percent (60%) of the proceeds...more

When Can a CGL Policy Do a Disappearing Act?

In Evanston Insurance Company v North American Capacity Company, 2014 U.S. LEXIS 92682, Evanston Insurance Company sued in U.S. District Court to seek contribution from North American Capacity Insurance Company where both...more

Think Twice About Heading to Court with a Construction Claim

Always take a two step approach to every construction claim. The first step is do you have some likelihood of winning. The second is do you have a likelihood of collecting. Regardless do your homework and grab the...more

Limitation of Liability Clauses

Many industry form documents and custom construction contracts contain provisions shifting or limiting the respective parties’ risks. One of the more potentially significant risk-limiting provisions seen primarily in...more

News for Contractors and Construction Lenders in Arizona and Nevada – The Contractors' Lien May Trump the Bank's

In addition to an arid climate and plenty of sunshine, Arizona and Nevada have something more to offer contractors: a potentially advantageous position over lenders when a project goes bad. When a project derails and...more

Is Your Design Professional Construction Contract Too Friendly? (Law Note)

My husband often travels the back roads between Chapel Hill and Fuquay Varina to visit friends. En route (a circuitous route that goes past Sharon Harris Nuclear Power Plant, among other places), he passes by the “Friendly...more

Court of Appeal Ameliorates (a Bit) the "Harshness" of Business and Professions Code Section 7031

California courts have variously described Business and Professions Code section 7031 as “draconian,” “harsh[ ]“ and “[u]njust[ ],” but nonetheless enforceable. Section 7031 both prohibits unlicensed or improperly...more

Construction Contracts – Limitation on Recovery For Unlicensed Contractor

E.J. Franks Construction, Inc. v Bhupinder K. Sahota, et al. - Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District (June 5, 2014) - The purpose of the Contractors’ State License Law (Business & Professions Code sections...more

Muskrat Falls megahydro cost increases

The Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador is promoting the development of a multi-phase, gigawatt-scale hydropower project on the Churchill River in Labrador. But estimates of the so-called megaproject's...more

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