Running a construction company isn’t easy, especially when you find yourself in the middle of a legal issue. The setback can be so big that you may have to spend significant time in court instead of attending to your projects. Here are a few common legal issues that you should keep in mind to ensure that you can tackle them efficiently with the help of building and construction lawyers.
1. Design defects
Various reasons can lead to design defects in a project, such as substandard materials, code violations, or structural issues. The property owner may sue your company because of these defects. It is better if you have the backing of an experienced construction lawyer to save your business and its reputation. Otherwise, structural issues usually point out your workers’ inability to follow instructions. You need to prove to the judge that your team did the best to complete the project. Discuss the options to defend your case before taking it to court.
2. Project delays
Project delays are not always in your hands. Extreme weather conditions may force you to stop working for a few days and resume later. Sometimes, things may not go as planned, such as your raw materials supplier delays in sending goods to the construction site or maybe a few workers falling sick while working. You can’t predict these things.
If you have sufficient proof that proves that you didn’t delay the project intentionally, the judge may tip the case in your favor. On the other hand, delays due to unskilled labor or breakdown of machinery may go against you. You must check the working condition of all the machines before starting a project.
3. Contract disputes
Contract disputes are the most common legal issues in the construction industry. However, it’s easy to mitigate these issues, provided you work with an experienced construction lawyer. Therefore, the first thing you need to do before signing the contract is consulted with the lawyer about its terms and conditions.
Let the lawyer draft the contract on your behalf. If the property owner already has a contract ready, your lawyer should review it thoroughly to check whether any discrepancies can later come back to bite you. Most contract disputes arise because either the property owner or the construction company fails to follow the terms and conditions mentioned in the contract.
4. Mechanic’s lien
Sometimes, property owners refuse to pay the total amount they deserve for your project. Instead, they give various excuses to delay the payment. In such cases, you can enforce the mechanic’s lien. The lien is an agreement containing the details of the project, including the number of days to complete the work, the total payment you are supposed to get, the entire raw materials cost, and the blueprint of the project.
If the property owner doesn’t pay you the total amount, you can ask your lawyer to enforce the lien even after knowing the details in the contract and mechanic’s lien. The judge would request the property owner to make the payment. If he still can’t pay, the court will sell the property to meet your expenses.
It is sometimes challenging to avoid disputes in the construction industry, especially with so many codes and laws to follow. Ensure you consult with a construction lawyer before every project to stay out of trouble.
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