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11 Mar, 2020

A Very Bad Day Indeed

2020-03-04T07:53:57-06:00March 11th, 2020|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Damages, Construction Defect, Nebraska Construction Law|

As a construction attorney, I am often tasked with confronting architects and engineers on the decisions they made in planning or monitoring construction projects.  The vast majority of times, the architect or engineer is well versed in the underlying regulations and codes on which he or she based their decisions.  But sometimes, the architect or engineer admits to having no knowledge of the underlying codes and to having no previous [...]

26 Feb, 2020

Can I Borrow Your Backhoe? 

2020-02-22T12:21:51-06:00February 26th, 2020|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Insurance, Nebraska Construction Law|

Borrowing equipment is a common occurrence on construction sites.  But, it’s riskier than you might think.  There could be a number of questions about whose insurance is responsible to pay for damages should something go wrong. The Situation A fellow subcontractor has asked to borrow your backhoe for the remainder of the day.  You don’t need it for the work you are doing, so you let him borrow it.  The [...]

30 Jan, 2020

Construction Contract Basics—Schedule

2020-01-29T09:32:51-06:00January 30th, 2020|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Contracts, Nebraska Construction Law|

Last week’s post on the Las Vegas Raiders’ stadium got me thinking about scheduling language in construction contracts.  Scheduling is a critically important piece of the construction contract puzzle, yet not all contracts contain firm schedules or even start dates.  This may be because the general contractor wants some flexibility as to when the work will start. But, for the subcontractor, an elusive start date can wreak havoc on its [...]

15 Jan, 2020

Construction Contract Basics—Scope of Work

2020-01-11T10:37:04-06:00January 15th, 2020|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Contracts, Nebraska Construction Law, Scope of Work|

This year, every other blog post will address common construction contract clauses. My hope is that my readers will either find the content a good refresher or provide a new understanding of common construction clauses.  Today, I’ll address the Scope of Work provision. Some contractors and construction attorneys would argue that the Scope of Work provision in the contract is the most important section because it defines what a contractor [...]

31 Dec, 2019

The Vagaries of Litigation

2019-12-30T07:30:19-06:00December 31st, 2019|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Litigation, Nebraska Construction Law|

Over the past few years, I’ve posted blogs about the Seattle Viaduct project and the problems Bertha, the tunnel-boring machine, ran into on the project.  Not surprisingly, the parties sued each other.  And, Big Bertha’s problems continued into the courtroom. As some of you may recall, Big Bertha was launched with much fanfare, then ran into a pipe and stopped working. The project was finally completed in February, 2019, three [...]

17 Dec, 2019

OSHA Inspections Continue to Rise

2019-12-14T12:28:58-06:00December 17th, 2019|Construction Contractor Advisor, Nebraska Construction Law, OSHA|

Earlier this month, OSHA released its final statistics for 2019 and they show a significant increase in the number of inspections.  But, OSHA also provided a record number of compliance training opportunities for employers. OSHA Inspections This past year, OSHA conducted 33,401 inspections addressing violations related to trenching, falls, chemical exposure, silica and other hazards. This is up nearly 1,400 from the previous year. OSHA Training OSHA also provided a [...]

10 Dec, 2019

What is a “Waiver of Subrogation” in Construction Contracts?

2019-12-07T12:15:51-06:00December 10th, 2019|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Contracts, Nebraska Construction Law, Subrogation|

Waiver of Subrogation clauses are contained in nearly every form construction contract.  Contractors sign them as a matter of course, but how often do you actually consider what it means to waive subrogation?  In this blog, we’ll discuss what subrogation is and why it’s usually a good idea to waive it. What is Subrogation? Legally speaking, subrogation is a concept that allows an insurance company that has paid a loss [...]

22 Nov, 2019

A Bond is NOT Insurance

2019-11-22T09:23:13-06:00November 22nd, 2019|Bond Claims, Construction Contractor Advisor, Insurance coverage, Nebraska Construction Law|

There are fundamental differences between insurance and surety bonds and knowing the difference will help you avoid making mistakes, should claims arise.  This blog will discuss the differences between insurance and surety bonds. Insurance An insurance policy is a two party contract between an insurer and the insured.  The policy is intended to protect the insured.  The cost of insurance is calculated by the insurer based on how many claims [...]

6 Sep, 2019

Can a General Contractor Be Liable for a Subcontractor’s Employee’s Injury?

2019-09-05T09:08:32-05:00September 6th, 2019|Construction Contractor Advisor, Nebraska Construction Law, Risk Management|

The short answer is maybe.  Nebraska courts have long held that a general contractor can be held liable for a subcontractor’s employee’s injury, but only if the general contractor exercises significant control over both the worksite and the subcontractor.  The question becomes whether the general contractor’s conduct demonstrates this control. A general contractor that retains control over a subcontractor’s work has a duty to use reasonable care to prevent injuries [...]

22 Aug, 2019

Filing Your Construction Lien on Time

2019-08-19T14:46:36-05:00August 22nd, 2019|Construction Contractor Advisor, Construction Lien, Nebraska Construction Law|

As we have discussed in other blog posts, filing a construction lien on time is critical to preserving your claim. If you file a construction lien in Nebraska outside of the 120-day window, your lien will be invalid. This past week, we filed a construction lien electronically in Douglas County.  This means that we submitted the lien on-line and waited for a Douglas County employee to review the lien and [...]

16 Aug, 2019

Will You Get Paid for Delays? No Damage for Delay Clauses Say No. 

2019-08-16T14:47:48-05:00August 16th, 2019|Construction Contractor Advisor, Nebraska Construction Law, No-damage-for-delay|

No-damage-for-delay Clauses are commonplace in construction contracts.  But, have you ever read one and wondered if they are enforceable?  Courts across the country have consistently enforced them and these clauses will severely limit your ability to recover damages caused by delays, even if the delays were not caused by you. What is a No Damage for Delay Clause A no-damage-for-delay clause is just that, a clause that explains that if [...]