Legal Insights Archive

Design-Assist vs. Design-Build

The terms, Design-Assist and Design-Build, are frequently used by the construction industry in recent years. While they sound similar, they could not mean more different things. Design Assist Under Design-Assist, the construction team, often including key subcontractors, is engaged by the owner to collaborate with the design professional during the design phase to improve constructability […]

Do I Need a Bond on My Next Project?

Many owner-developers choose to forego requiring a Performance and Payment Bond from their contractors in the hope of shaving another 1%-2% from the project cost. However, current market conditions suggest that owners rethink that decision. The current industry environment consists of busy contractors competing for a limited labor pool, and struggling to meet ambitious project […]

5 Ways to Attack a “Pay if Paid” Clause

“Pay when Paid” in many jurisdictions – including Ohio – means that while timing of payment may be delayed, there still is obligation to pay the sub within a reasonable period of time. In contrast, “Pay if Paid” (frequently utilizing words like “if” and “condition precedent”) means that not only timing, but also entitlement to […]

Unilateral Arbitration Agreements Pose Risks

It is increasingly common to encounter dispute resolution provisions that allow one party the right to unilaterally select arbitration or litigation after the dispute develops. These “unilateral arbitration” clauses are criticized by some as being unfair because they allow one party – usually the upstream party – to shop for a favorable venue once the […]

Ten Things to Remember During a Time of Growth

The construction industry is blessed with solid growth but challenged by a labor shortage. Those who remember these simple principles will do well. 1. Now is the time to demand Fair Contract language and secure it. If not now, when? It is much easier in good times to insist upon equitable contract terms. 2. Condition […]