Volume: 6, Issue: 25 - 06/23/2017


By Jim Zack


Construction claims are becoming increasingly prevalent and expensive. It is key that owners and contractors work together to keep the project on schedule and communicate any deviations from plan.


The key to successful projects is communicate, communicate, communicate! Whether you are dealing with a partnering situation or a normal construction project, it is imperative to openly communicate early and often.


In reality, in construction, we often stifle communications for fear of liability. But, bad news delivered early is useful information. Bad news delivered late is a disaster!

The article reviews such possible aspects of project communication as partnering, pre-construction audits, delegation, project trending, document trail, use of technology, log and schedule submittals and more. Read more.

Volume: 6, Issue: 24 - 06/16/2017


By Bruce Jervis


A settlement agreement, as most contracts, can be crafted narrowly to apply to very specific matters. Or, it may be a broad, comprehensive resolution of all disputed matters. Either way, an essential element of a settlement agreement is a waiver and release of claims. Read more.

Volume: 6, Issue: 23 - 06/09/2017


In fiscal year 2015, OSHA Citations in the Focus Four Area constituted 94% of the fines among the TOP 20 OSHA Violations. Year-in, year-out, OSHA Citations are at 85% for Focus Four Violations and 90% of the fine amounts. Given these numbers, an OSHA inspection will likely concentrate on Focus Four areas.


During a recent webinar program presented in conjunction with ConstructionPro Network, Neil Opfer, a professor at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, told attendees that as construction projects get more complicated, increases in safety protection become even more important. Learn more.

Volume: 6, Issue: 22 - 06/02/2017


By Bruce Jervis


The concept of “concurrent delay” is straightforward. A contractor cannot recover for suspended or delayed work caused by the project owner if the contractor would have otherwise been unable to perform during the period in question. In effect, the owner-caused delay is cancelled out by the contractor-caused delay. Read more.


 A scene that plays out thousands of times a year, and sucks countless millions of dollars of damages and attorneys’ fees out of the pockets of owners, contractors, and subcontractors, goes something like this. Halfway through construction of a large apartment building, inspectors notice some minor racking of the frame in the face of unusually high wind.


The project is suspended for additional inspection, and it turns out that some of the structural members are slightly undersized. It is clear that remedial work and supplemental engineering is necessary to protect the structural integrity of the building. Thus the battle begins over who will bear the costs of the remedial work and the resulting delay damages. Read more.

Volume: 6, Issue: 21 - 05/26/2017


 Claims do not magically appear during construction. The seeds of many disputes and many claims are planted prior to contract execution – as defective or incomplete design, a design that is not conforming to owner’s needs -- all are in the documents that go out to bid.


The most cost effective time to mitigate claims is prior to bidding.  Read more

Volume: 6, Issue: 20 - 05/19/2017


Technological progress is advancing at rapid speed bringing new technology that will allow constructors to increase productivity, cut costs and possibly even help in dispute mitigation should contractors, owners, designers, project managers and engineers agree to adopt it.


Let’s review the latest technology entering the industry from the standpoint of construction claims. Read more.  


The intended purpose of a construction schedule is to assist with proper planning, coordination and managing of a project. Unfortunately, construction schedules are often used to help build claims against project owners. Read more.

Volume: 6, Issue: 19 - 05/12/2017


Government agencies at all levels are fond of publishing guides and manuals pertaining to construction materials and methods. They are usually detailed and precise. And, they are available, primarily online, to anyone with an interest. Read more

Volume: 6, Issue: 18 - 05/05/2017


By Paul Levin


In a recent case in the state of Washington, the judge voided, as a matter of law, a $425,388 jury award to a subcontractor who computed his own lost productivity costs using the measured mile. Meanwhile, in another case where a contractor computed his own lost profit costs, the court allowed the method of calculation. What’s the difference? Read more.




VOL. 15   ISSUE 11 - JUNE 2017


 Problems arise when a party signs a settlement agreement and then ignores its language, trying to treat it as something it is not. In a recent case involving a federal project, the government settled two sets of claims. The claims involved discrete aspects of the project and problems that occurred during a three-month period. Read more.


 A state mechanic’s lien statute requirement to provide the “name of owner” of the property was interpreted expansively. The failure to indicate that an individual was the trustee of a trust did not invalidate a lien filing. The individual had legal authority to convey or encumber the real estate and the omission would not affect a title examination.


 A contractor’s settlement of prior claims against the government pertained to a narrow, discrete aspect of the project. The contractor did not release the right to pursue a claim for the overall impact of delay and disruption to the project.

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