Construction Litigation & Arbitration
At Fahl & Donaldson, PLLC, we are skilled, effective litigators in a wide variety of construction matters. When a construction dispute cannot be resolved, our attorneys are ready to go to trial or arbitration to protect your interests. We make every case trial-ready because that is the best way to achieve optimal results for our clients, even if the case is ultimately resolved outside of court or in an arbitration hearing.
We provide representation in matters of dispute resolution, including litigation and arbitration of claims involving defective design, defective construction, bid protests, scope of work issues, schedule delay and disruption, mechanics’ and materialmen’s liens, contractor default, payment bond claims, performance bond defaults, contractor or subcontractor termination, force majeure, start-up, warranty, unforeseen conditions, and other construction-related disputes.
Timely, Effective Resolution Of Disputes
When a dispute cannot be resolved, a third party — for example, a judge, a jury or an arbitration panel — may be required resolve the dispute.
Unlike many other firms, our attorneys have real trial experience. We have tried many cases in state and federal courts, and we have resolved complex construction disputes before arbitration panels.
Our litigation team has more than 100 years of combined experience. If you are involved in a construction dispute, do not hesitate to put us on your side today. We know the construction industry, and we know what is at stake for our clients. Let us fight for you.
We are proven litigators with a long record of success. Put our construction litigation team on your side today if you need to resolve a complex construction dispute. We proactively advocate on our clients’ behalf throughout the course of construction projects and the dispute resolution process.
Mechanics’ And Materialmen’s Liens
There is no area of construction law more confusing than mechanics’ and materialmen’s lien law. Because of the competing interests of owners, lenders, title companies, architects, contractors, subcontractors, sureties and several other groups, Texas lien law is as clear as a theoretical physicist’s theories on the origins of the universe. It is very easy to make a mistake when trying to perfect a mechanics’ and materialmen’s lien. If the claimant does make an error, the claimant could be exposed to claims of filing a fraudulent lien or placing a wrongful cloud on the title of the property.
We defend owners and/or general contractors against claims made by unpaid subcontractors or suppliers that have filed mechanics’ and materialmen’s liens on the property where the project is located. In many cases, the dispute is resolved by determining that the proper procedures set forth in the Texas Property Code were not followed, and the lien is not “perfected” for the amount claimed, or the owner’s liability is limited to the retainage and the funds “trapped” by proper notices from the claimants. On other occasions, a summary motion to remove an invalid lien must be filed to remove a wrongfully filed lien.
For an unpaid subcontractor, a mechanics’ and materialmen’s lien is the only security for non-payment. Our attorneys can assist you in the proper method to perfect a claim against the owner’s property due to non-payment by the general contractor, and the best way to communicate with the owner to reduce the amount heartburn the lien notice or lien may cause. We can help you successfully foreclose your perfected mechanics’ and materialmen’s lien to recover all or part of the amounts due on a project.
Payment & Performance Bonds
Failure of a contractor or subcontractor to pay its subcontractors and/or suppliers usually results in work stoppage, delay to the schedule, breach of contract, default and termination. The payment bond surety must determine if the claims are valid and if the claims are perfected. We have the experience to work with the surety, and the surety’s principle, the contractor, to determine if a claim is valid, and also to determine if a claim has been perfected under the Texas Property Code, the Texas Government Code or the Miller Act.
Default and/or insolvency of a contractor usually results in the contractor being unable or unwilling to complete the project. When this occurs, the owner will declare the contractor in default and make demand on the performance bond surety to complete the project.
Our construction law attorneys have the knowledge and experience to help the performance bond surety, the contractor/principle and/or the owner/obligee to navigate a bad situation. We can help you determine (a) the scope of work required to complete the project; (b) if the defaulting contractor should be assisted in completing the project; (c) if a completion contractor should be tendered; (d) if the bond proceeds should be paid to the obligee; or (e) another alternative.
Third parties, such as lenders, taxing authorities, etc., become involved with competing claims to the contract balance and claims against the performance bond and (occasionally) the payment bond. Often the surety and the insurance companies become adverse parties. Insurance companies that have provided liability, property or builder’s risk insurance to the owner, contractor or subcontractors often become involved in claims involving defective design, defective construction or damage to the work. This situation can be difficult when the bond principle and the insured are the same company.
Our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to guide you through the process, protect your interests and seek a favorable resolution.
To discuss your concerns with an experienced construction law attorney, please call Fahl & Donaldson, PLLC, at 346-241-7355 or compete our contact form. We provide litigation services for clients throughout Texas and the Gulf Coast area.