Top 3 New Construction Arbitration Rules That Expand Powers and Challenge Assumptions

When it comes to construction contracts, arbitration and mediation (Alternate Dispute Resolution) are both commonly specified for out of court dispute resolution.  The use of mediation and arbitration in construction contracts, both for small and large construction, has been increasingly common over the past decade.

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So What Is an Improvement, Anyhow?

 

Under New York construction law, much emphasis is placed on the “improvement” of real property (real estate). Indeed reference to improvements are often found in New York construction contracts, and establishing an improvement is required for a contractor to establish a valid lien on a privately owned project. But what specifically are the ins and outs?

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Post Contract Signing Considerations For The New York Contractor

Contractors and subcontractors frequently consult with their attorneys in the negotiation of construction contracts before they are signed, but counsel’s involvement generally ends at that point until and unless litigation arises down the road. Nevertheless, additional consultation with attorneys after execution of contracts can ensure that contractors and subcontractors meet their respective obligations and may confer savings that far offset the costs.

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Homeowners Unable To Recover For Emotional Distress In Construction Disputes

 

 

Many homeowners who consult with me regarding construction disputes are not only financially damaged but emotionally distressed, and understandably so. Our homes are not only our biggest financial investments but our sanctuaries, and misconduct by unscrupulous contractors that damages those sanctuaries makes us feel that we have no place of safety and, in some instances, makes us worry that we may be homeless altogether. Thus, the question is often posed to me whether homeowners can collect damages for emotional distress that results from construction contract disputes, in addition to their economic damages.

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Considerations When Hiring an Architect

 

Oftentimes, owners find themselves wondering if they need an architect of design professional for their project, and might be unfamiliar with the terms and forms used in their contracts. This article provides a refresher on the types of projects an owner should have an architect for, and the typical forms of contracts used for the project.

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If You Want a Construction Contract Enforced, You Need Your License

Recently, a contractor asked me how to create a good contract. After further discussion, I understood that this contractor was not licensed, but wanted advice on obtaining a good contract. Well, what is a good contract after all?

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Changes vs. Cardinal Changes: The Limit of Construction Contract Changes

 

Changes are an unavoidable aspect of construction. Although thorough effort and coordination are required in preparing the original project contract, specifications and construction drawings, there will still be changes. This is why owners are provided the right to make changes to the work under a typical contract changes clause.

However, the ability for owner requested changes, even if provided in the contract, are not without limitations, restrictions, and consequences. After all, what purpose would any of the project documents, contracts and drawings serve if they were subject to constant change? What good would the contract serve if the owner could make any change(s) without consequence?

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Top 5 Contractor Defenses in New York

 

Contractors are not only responsible for performing their contracted work, but are also charged with keeping the owner and the subcontractors working together to bring the project to completion successfully. Given this, they are regularly the subject of legal disputes. For this reason, many could benefit from an understanding of the following top 5 contractor defenses available in New York.

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5 Reasons to Consider Arbitration for Your Construction Dispute

 

In a recent client conference, I was asked, “So what is arbitration, anyhow?” In the context of a construction claim or in seeking to prevent such a claim, there are several significant advantages that arbitration can provide in lieu of litigation. In today’s challenging business environment, this signifies awareness of the various options available that could make an important impact on your business’ circumstance.

Briefly stated, arbitration is a private, informal process by which all parties agree, in writing, to submit their dispute to one or more impartial persons authorized to resolve the controversy by rendering a final and binding award.[i] What makes this process unique is the ability, with some advance consideration, to customize and tailor the dispute resolution process to suit the needs of the company.

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Construction Contract Drafting Considerations

To minimize potential legal problems when planning construction, whether the project is a large commercial project, a new residence, or even a renovation to an existing structure, care must be taken to have essential terms included in the contract.

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