For contractors and developers, both the risk and the rewards of the construction process can be high. The construction market in the United States was worth $1,162 billion in 2016, and when litigation happens, there can be enormous damages as well as great loss of professional reputation. This is one reason why having a construction attorney is crucial to the success of any contracting business.
Understanding a Range of Issues
One of the challenges that a construction attorney faces is mastering a wide variety of issues. Construction law is its own unique branch of the larger legal system, and it can involve issues of eminent domain and land use ordinances, as well as requiring an understanding of environmental law, employment law, and public law issues.
Understanding Different Types of Projects
Construction can be as small as a single residence and as complex as commercial real estate law where multiple parties are involved. A construction attorney must be competent not only in all the aspects of the law and regulations over a variety of disciplines but also in understanding the technical drawings and designs involves as well the disciplines that go into a successful construction project.
One mistake many contractors make is waiting for until a problem arises to hire a construction attorney. The problem with this approach is that even the best attorneys need time to get up to speed on the specifics of a case, and the best lawyers are very busy with case loads already. Thus it is critical to have a construction law firm in on the ground floor of any project, to protect contractor interests from the first stages of negotiation and agreement, as well as to make sure that a legal professional fully understands the case in case anything goes wrong.
Areas of Expertise
A competent construction attorney is able to assist contractors and subcontractors in issues involving delay and bankruptcy, permits and regulations, claims and liens, wage and labor issues, mediation and negotiation, insurance and payments, surety law, environmental law, and violations. At a minimum, a construction attorney will help with negotiations, then protect payments, assist with proposals, keep the project on budget, time, and code, and help to submit claims.
Who Needs A Construction Attorney?
Anyone contracted or subcontracted for any public, private, or federal project will be better protected with a construction law expert on their side. Whether a contractor is beginning a project or stuck in the middle, needs a permit or are concerned about missed regulations, are planning a new project or need to create a legal document, or are facing an active dispute with an employee or contract party opposite, construction attorneys are the smart way to protect business and investment.