Florida Construction Lawyers and the Importance of Construction Law
The construction industry in Florida is very large and growing every day. For such a vast industry, having a qualified Florida Construction Lawyer on your side is a wise decision. Building owners often place a large investment in the property he or she may own and in most cases, it could be the most expensive long-term investment that building owner might ever make. Building and construction lawyers deal with any legal issue that is related to the construction of a building. These issues arise under all levels of the law, from federal laws all the way down to city laws.
Under the federal statutes there are laws that set requirements for worksites and hiring practices. The Florida Statutes sets further regulations on employment and practices that are harmful to Florida’s environment. Zoning and construction standards are set by cities and counties. Florida construction lawyers are well aware of these laws, and can help a builder or contractor follow the laws, or they can help property owners receive compensation if the construction company and/or contractor did not follow these laws.
How Can a Construction Attorney Help General Contractors?
As a general contractor you either own or work for a construction company, so it is important to hire an attorney who understands both business law and construction law. Contractors draw up agreements or contracts with specialized subcontractors, who collectively provide everything that a building needs in order for it to be built, such as electricity, plumbing, flooring, drywall, etc.
General contractors also draw up contracts with the individuals whom are constructing the building. Smart general contractors will work with attorneys to help write these contracts. At this point you may be wondering what specifically a contract is. By definition, it is a legally enforceable agreement between two parties. In the world of construction, contract law plays a big role and Florida Construction Lawyers are very well versed in these areas.
Building lawyers are also helpful when it comes to bidding on a government construction project. Regarding a contract for a government building, it is very important to pay close attention to what the government
expects of the building before you have won the contract. If you are unable to fulfill these expectations, you should not bid on the contract. Once you have decided that you can fulfill the government’s expectations, and have won the contract, it is a very good idea to hire a Florida business lawyer. An attorney will be able to help you with the ever changing laws that are related to government contracts.
In these contracts there are usually clauses that lay out how to deal with disputes. Disputes can arise between general contractors and property owners. These disputes can be over construction fraud committed by the general contractor or construction Company, but disputes tend to be over less dramatic things such as budget, delays or where the bathroom should go. When general contractors or construction companies hire construction dispute lawyers, the contract between the general contractor and property owner will be well worded with descriptive clauses so that these disputes are small, not time consuming, and can be solved easily.
What happens when construction fraud is committed or a contract is breached? Hopefully as a general contractor, this never happens to you, but accidents do happen. Should this occur, as the general contractor you may want to fix any problems that can be fixed. If mistakes are made that end up affecting the lives of those the live, work, or play in the building that a general contractor has built, it often results in either the contractor or the construction company being sued. When this happens, the general contractor’s, or the construction company’s Florida construction lawyer would then step in to defend his or her client.
Can a Florida Construction Lawyer address Building Defects?
If you are a property owner and your building has a defect, you may want to contact your contractor or the construction company, because in most cases, this may be all that is needed to get the defect fixed. Constructing a building takes the collaboration of many different people, so mistakes tend to be a common thing in the construction industry. If the mistake is minor, sometimes things just simply slip through the cracks, the general contractor or the construction company may be more than willing to fix it with little to no cost.
Although these minor defects are the most common defects, sometimes general contractors make huge mistakes or commit fraud. When this is the case, it is more than appropriate to hire a construction defect attorney. The defects that warrant the hiring of an attorney are those that affect the lives of those that occupy the building. Examples of such defects are mold, toxic drywall, and other unsafe building materials or practices that can cause health hazards.
If you are in the unfortunate position of having a defect that has negative health effects, then you will want to hire a Florida construction lawyer that has litigation experience. Litigation is not cheap, but with a good attorney the case may go in your favor, and you may receive compensation.
What Happens if I’m Sued?
The most common legal issues that arise in construction are those dealing with money. Sometimes an expert in construction contract law is needed. As a property owner it is important to remember that you are also under contract. A well prepared construction contract will clearly define the terms, timing, and amount of the payment from the property owner to the general contractor. If a general contractor or a construction company has not received payment for their work, they may sue their clients for breach of contract or place a lien on the finished work.
As the property owner, you may not be able to pay because the construction went over budget due to unexpected costs (for example having to unexpectedly move underground sewage lines). You, as the property owner, may also refuse to pay because you are not satisfied with the construction. If a property owner is sued it is in his or her best interest to hire a construction law firm.
A Florida Construction Lawyer can advise a client of its legal options so the client may make a decision in its best interests. If a building is not built to contracted specifications, your Florida construction lawyer may be able to reach a resolution on your behalf which remedies the defect with the construction company or general contractor without the need for litigation.
What Does it Mean When a Construction Dispute Goes to Litigation?
Litigation is something that happens across the entire legal field. Most people think that when a case is in litigation, it means that the case is being tried in a court, but this is not quite right. The litigation process starts long before any witness, defendant, plaintiff, judge, jury, or attorney steps into a court room. By definition litigation refers to the rules and practices involved in resolving disputes. Litigation arises from a lawsuit. When it comes to construction law either the property owner or the general contractor or sub-contractor can sue the other party. The party that initiates the lawsuit is referred to as the plaintiff, and the party being sued is the defendant.
Despite what television shows may make us believe, statistically few cases ever make it to trial. Some cases are usually resolved before any court proceedings. Before the litigation process starts, the plaintiff will send a notice to the defendant, requesting the defendant to remedy the defect or problem. If the defendant is a general contractor or construction company, there may be a construction remedy to resolve the request. If the defendant is the property owner, there may be a payment or other resolution to make the general contractor or construction company whole.
However, sometimes litigation is unavoidable. If litigation proceeds, the parties, each with his or her own construction litigation attorney, engage in several stages including what is called discovery. Discovery is a mandatory exchange of information through documents and other requests between the parties. The work that is required of the construction law attorney during this step is tedious and time consuming, which is one of the reasons construction litigation may become very expensive. After discovery, the attorneys may appear before a judge to determine if the case will proceed to trial or if it may be resolved in another manner.
Where can I find good Florida Construction Lawyers?
Florida has recently become the third largest state in terms of population, so construction in the state is a busy industry. Having a broad understanding of the legal field, the law offices of Bret Jones P.A. in Clermont, Florida has dealt with and continues to handle with many construction cases. If you are in need of an experienced Florida Construction Lawyer, please fill out the form on this page and we’ll contact you as soon as possible.
Findlaw http://hirealawyer.findlaw.com/choosing-the-right-lawyer/construction-law.html , http://hirealawyer.findlaw.com/choosing-the-right-lawyer/defects-construction-and-housing.html , http://hirealawyer.findlaw.com/choosing-the-right-lawyer/contracts-law.html
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