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Construction and Surety, Construction Litigation, Real Estate Litigation

Many construction contracts now contain arbitration clauses.  Arbitration can be an effective dispute resolution process, but how the clauses operate in practice can raise challenges.  This is especially true when intertwined with mediation requirements and mechanic liens under state law.  The scenario below illustrates how the seeming conflicts could be resolved.

Assume a contractor under

Protecting the right to get paid is central to any business and the construction industry is no exception. The Protecting Payment Series on the Larkin Hoffman Real Estate and Construction Blog focuses on the means and methods businesses in the construction industry use to protect their right to payment. It touches on issues of contracts,

For mechanic lien claimants having “priority” is a charmed state. Priority refers to the ordering of claims against a piece of real estate. Claims with first priority get paid first from the proceeds of a sale or foreclosure.  Being “junior” can mean no payday at all.

Minnesota, like most states, has its own rules for

There are clouds gathering now on the payment horizon for the construction industry.  The clouds converging now and on into the fall call for even greater attention to protecting construction industry receivables. This applies to the industry from top to bottom.

Construction was an “essential business” allowed to continue operating in Minnesota.  That designation allowed

This is the third part in this series. Part Two of this series discussed purchase order contracts for materials which may have a force majeure clause of some description (including possibly in online terms).  Where there is no explicit force majeure clause, suppliers should look to the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) which provides an integrated

This is the second part in this series. Part one addressed force majeure clauses in construction contracts and how a material supplier may have bound itself to all the terms of the general contractor’s contract documents.  That incorporation can bring the force majeure clause into play for a supplier. It also bypasses the underlying Uniform

Construction is an essential business under Minnesota’s Stay at Home order. The order itself, has not shuttered construction projects—yet–but there are many other potential impacts of the current COVID-19 crisis on those projects including disruption of supply chains.

Most prime contracts and many subcontracts include force majeure clauses to address the impacts of unforeseen events.

Sometimes construction material or equipment the contractor buys turns out to be defective.  It leaks. A part is missing.  Something simply does not function straight from the box.  Jumping on the defect claim may not seem to have highest priority in the middle of a construction project.  “Back charge” may the automatic response, but it

In each state, statutes govern the right to a construction lien.  It is almost inevitable that someone, someday, will not meet a required step.  The lien is lost, and with it, whatever leverage or payment security it represented.

There is still a balance to collect—unless the creditor has improvidently signed something that also waives the