Construction & Suretyship

Overview

Hirschler Fleischer's construction group combines a top-rated trial practice with real world project expertise. Our attorneys deliver no-nonsense, business solutions for the complexities of today's construction industry.

Our team knows the full project spectrum - from concept drawings to close-out. Our clients include general contractors, subcontractors, engineers, architects, owners, developers, lenders, and equity and investment funds. We assist companies each day with project initiation, bidding, contract negotiations, project management and dispute resolution. When a beneficial solution cannot be found in the field or through negotiation, our lawyers pilot the project through the arbitration, trial or appellate process.

Our lawyers have broad experience representing public and private owners, engineering and design firms, contractors and subcontractors. Our clients include national and regional powerhouses, as well as smaller and family-owned groups. We take great pride in our client's projects and extend our responsibility into all stages of the project process to assist our clients with pragmatic and profitable results.

Our construction practice includes a strong foundation built upon the real estate and land use expertise that has made Hirschler Fleischer stand out for more than 65 years. When needed, our team can call upon a deep bench of expertise among our colleagues to handle the unique tax, real estate, finance, employment, environmental, trade secret, insurance and governmental issues that can arise during construction.

With You From The Outset

Our practice covers the spectrum of construction from conceptual drawings through close-out. Our lawyers work regularly with all major professional and industry documents, including those by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), ConsensusDOCS, Associated General Contractors (AGC), the Engineers Joint Contracts Documents Committee (EJCDC), and the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA). We use these forms as a starting point for preparing and negotiating contracts to suit the needs of each project. Alternatively, we create unique forms for companies looking to design their own document set or for projects that are beyond the reach of standardized form sets.

Our project involvement includes traditional allocations of design and construction responsibility as well as design/build (D/B), design/build operate maintain (D/BOM), build-own-transfer (BOT), build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT), construction manager (CM), program manager (PM), and engineer-procure-construct (EPC or turnkey), integrated project delivery (IPM) and building information modeling (BIM).

Project Development

Reflecting the firm's strong foundations in real estate, our lawyers represent project developers in many sectors, including commercial, residential, utility, transportation, retail and manufacturing projects, among many others. Representation and counseling follows all aspects of development deals, including ownership arrangements, acquisition, zoning, permitting and regulatory matters, financing, construction, operations and management.

Government Contracting

Our attorneys advise clients at all levels of public contracting with federal, state, and local entities. Our lawyers understand the regulatory maze that can accompany public procurement and contracting and are comfortable pursuing our clients claims before administrative boards or in court.

Cost Recovery and Claims

We don't just understand the contracts and the law - we understand the practical and business aspects of construction projects. Our clients don't just rely on us for contract formation and dispute resolution, but turn to us with project management and administrative assistance on a day-to-day basis during the construction phase. We don't just resolve disputes - we work with our clients to avoid them in the first place. Our experience includes proactive efforts to spot and address potential problems before the issue - or the project - gets too big.

Just like projects, problems on projects come in all shapes and sizes. We tackle issues involving construction and design defects, change orders, extra work, time extensions, defaults, terminations, liquidated damages, poor project management, and project close-out disputes. We understand scheduling and the claims that arise from schedules that are inaccurate or ignored, including delay, disruption, interference, lost productivity, compression and actual and constructive acceleration. As necessary, we work to protect and guide our clients through site and safety issues, including differing site conditions, slope and shoring failures, poor soils, environmental hazards, and OSHA and state regulatory violations.

Hirschler Fleischer uses all avenues available to get our clients paid for their work, including mechanic's liens, lawsuits, claims, and payment and performance bonds (including federal Miller Act and state Little Miller Act bonds).

Labor & Employment

Managing a construction labor force requires careful attention to employment laws that can change on almost a daily basis. Construction projects can give rise to unique situations involving labor unions, temporary work forces, immigrant labors, and worker protection laws. Our construction lawyers understand the factors that add stress to every project and, when needed, can call upon Hirschler Fleischer's employment and immigration attorneys to assist with anticipating, avoiding and resolving these issues.

OSHA Investigations, Fines and Litigation

We understand that our clients value safety. Our attorneys are positioned to give our clients immediate and practical advice to guide them through OSHA inspections and site visits. When accidents or violations occur, we have the depth of experience to work with OSHA investigators to minimize liability as well as adverse public relations and business impacts.

Catastrophe Counseling

Even the most well-managed project can be sidetracked by catastrophic losses in the form of fire, water damage, collapse or injury. Our lawyers have counseled our clients through losses ranging from partial to total and worked to get the project back on track as quickly and cost-effectively as possible while minimizing liability. We work with all parties and their insurers to develop a recovery plan while working to minimize our client's exposure to future claims by employing forensic engineers, investigators and others to determine what went wrong and why. A prompt response and attention to detail can prevent a catastrophe from becoming a financial disaster, too.

Dispute Resolution

Our lawyers work within any forum necessary to reach the most advantageous business solution for ur clients. Our experience includes informal negotiations, mediations, arbitrations, state and federal administrative agencies, contract appeals boards and the state and federal court systems.

Insurance & Risk Management

Construction involves complex insurance needs and coverage issues. Our lawyers have specialized knowledge regarding the insurance products and practices required to allocate risk and protect projects and assets. We employ our knowledge at the outset of the job to minimize risk through negotiation and contracting and rely on when problems arise it to navigate loss claims through coverage disputes. Our experience includes matters arising under commercial general liability, builders risk, professional, environmental, commercial property, business interruption, marine, and other policies.