TEN NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS FOR CONTRACTORS-2021

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   As I sit down to write my annual list of resolutions for contractors, I am amazed at how much things changed in 2020. Construction was going well and then, in March 2020, COVID-19 hit. At first, we thought it was going to be a disaster for the construction industry. States, cities and towns shut down projects and many applied for PPP loans. Then, something amazing happened. Construction was considered an essential service and everyone was back to work.  That said, the work world changed: companies were donating their PPE to frontline workers, COVID-19 protocols had to be followed and paperwork had to be filed. Everyone was scrambling to figure out how to comply and keep their businesses going. So, you may or may not ask, what was I, as a construction lawyer doing? I spent March and April thinking about the new risks contractors/construction companies were facing and developing contract clauses to protect the industry. I wrote a number of blog posts with clauses to add to your contra

Contract Clauses That Every Construction Contract Should Have-Concealed Conditions

Hidden defects can greatly increase the cost of the work and the time for completion. Contractors must protect themselves in the event of hidden defects. I worked on a case involving one of the largest construction companies in the world who sued the state of Missouri because a bridge they were building was signifcantly delayed by underwater conditions that were not detected when the original survey was made. The case was in the millions of dollars.

This Agreement is based solely on the observations Contractor was able to make with the structure in its current condition at the time this Agreement was signed. If additional concealed conditions are discovered once work has commenced that were not visible at the time this contract was signed, Contractor will stop work and point out these unforeseen concealed conditions to Owner(s) so that Owner(s) and Contractor can execute a Change Order for any Additional Work.

Here's another one:

CONCEALED CONDITIONS: This Agreement is based solely on the observations Contractor was able to make with the structure in its current condition at the time this Agreement was signed. If additional concealed conditions are discovered once work has commenced that were not visible at the time this contract was signed, Contractor will stop work and point out these unforeseen concealed conditions to Owner(s) so that Owner(s) and Contractor can execute a Change Order for any Additional Work. Owner(s) agrees to be available within a 24 hour period to respond to Change Order work. Should Owner(s) delay project more than 24 hours by not responding to the Change Order, Owner(s) will be responsible for any costs to the Contractor plus a 33.3% GPM.

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