Here at Baker & Associates in Los Angeles, we represent construction-industry clients like contractors and developers in a wide range of business issues, including construction contracts. Construction contracts are extremely complex with provisions about project specifications, deliverable dates, delays, insurance, materials, financing and more.
In addition, we draft and review construction contracts for compliance with applicable state and federal laws, and to insure our clients are maximally protected.
We negotiate and draft tight construction contracts to protect our clients from future disputes. However, an unforeseen event may lead to a breach of contract allegation. For a construction-industry client, we help negotiate settlement of such a dispute, but if we cannot reach reasonable agreement, we will either file a breach of contract lawsuit or vigorously defend one in court.
A recent San Francisco lawsuit illustrates the kinds of issues that can arise in a construction project. In Alten Construction Inc. v. Fast Wrap Reno One LLC, a California contractor sued a Nevada subcontractor that had been contracted to provide a "weatherproof containment barrier" over a building to protect the construction site from the elements during the contractor's high school modernization construction project.
The amended complaint alleges the subcontractor improperly installed the barrier and as a result the building was damaged by water during storms, requiring the contractor to provide additional repairs and maintenance. The plaintiff also alleged the defendant did not defend or indemnify the contractor or provide required insurance.
The contractor brought multiple causes of action, seeking damages to cover money it had paid because of the allegedly faulty cover:
- Breach of contract
- Breach of express and implied warranty
- Express and equitable indemnity
- Misrepresentation, intentional or negligent
- Contribution to liabilities incurred by plaintiff from the damage
- Declaratory relief for a statement of rights and obligations from the court
- Disgorgement of payments for violation of consumer protection law requiring proper contractor licensing
- Attorney's fees
This is an example of the many and complicated kinds of legal issues that can arise in a construction project. Contractors, subcontractors, architects, designers, developers and others in the industry should develop a relationship with legal counsel who can help protect you with fair contracts, skillfully resolve disputes and aggressively fight for your rights or defend against claims in court or arbitration when necessary.