How Does a Construction Lawyer Negotiate a Contract Dispute
By Space Coast Daily // November 25, 2021
Negotiating a contract dispute allows the construction company and property owner to come to a mutual understanding and settle their differences. It’s essential to hire a construction lawyer to defend your claims against the property owner.
Sometimes, even well-drafted contracts may lead to disputes if you fail to abide by the construction laws or follow the owner’s instructions. However, building and construction lawyers usually follow the traditional style of dispute resolution to ensure that both parties benefit from the outcome of the case.
What do traditional dispute resolution techniques include?
The traditional techniques to resolve contract disputes are litigation, arbitration, and negotiation. However, arbitration and litigation are two adversarial processes that construction lawyers usually avoid as they may deteriorate the relationship between the client and the property owner.
Therefore, you may notice your lawyer trying to negotiate a deal instead of going for arbitration or litigation settlements.
On the other hand, negotiation is a non-adversarial technique that creates a win-win resolution for both parties, thus preserving the relationship between you and the property owner.
A few more dispute resolution techniques that the lawyer may choose to opt for include:
■ Early neutral evaluation
■ Court annexed arbitration
■ Dispute review boards
■ Summary jury trials
Negotiating the contract dispute
A contract dispute occurs when you and the property owner present documents that support your claims to reach a settlement that benefits both parties. For example, suppose the property owner wants to modify the construction plan after you start working. In that case, you may file claims indicating the additional work that your team had to do to complete the project if the owner doesn’t pay the total amount.
He would have to adjust the payment for the additional work. If he doesn’t come to an immediate agreement, you can file your claim and let your lawyer handle the case.
Your lawyer will discuss the case with the property owner’s attorney and come to a reasonable settlement so that you don’t have to incur a significant loss and the defendant doesn’t need to pay a fortune to settle the case.
Sometimes, the lawyers may agree with taking the case to court. This depends on how well your lawyer can negotiate a settlement with the defendant. If both parties don’t agree to settle, they may go to court and let the judge provide a fair verdict.
Construction contract claims
Disputes usually arise while constructing the property. You and the property owner may resort to contracting claims provided reasonable reasons to sue the other party.
The most common types of claims that construction lawyers usually handle are:
■ Construction failures
■ Design changes
■ Differing site conditions
■ Payment not received for additional work done
■ Suspension of work
■ Interpretation differences
The contract dispute may arise during or at the end of constructing the property. Lawyers usually try to solve the case as soon as possible so that you can get back to work, while the property owner can start using his property instead of spending time going to court.