Monday, January 4, 2010

Top 10 New Year’s Legal Resolutions for Everyone in Construction

10. Know who you’re contracting with, and make sure they are financially viable (or have a bonding or insurance company that is).

9. Treat your employees and staff fairly and they will (usually) treat you fairly in return.

8. The best defense to an OSHA investigation is to prevent an OSHA investigation.

7. Prevent costly personnel ambiguities by having well defined, fair, written policies in place in advance–and communicate those policies to all employees.

6. Don’t agree to any indemnity provision unless you’re willing to financially be on the hook for another party’s own negligence.
6a. If you negotiate indemnity from another party, make sure the indemnity provision in the contract is actually enforceable.

5. Do not include heavy-handed, punitive liquidated damage provisions in your contracts–courts will not enforce them.

4. Old emails never die–if you wouldn’t put it on paper, don’t type it and hit "Send."

3. Limitations of liability are serious stuff–if you use them, use them correctly.

2. Have good billing practices, know your lien deadlines, and stick to them!

And the #1 New Year’s Legal Resolution...drumroll please....

1. Read your contracts. Understand your contracts. Enforce your contracts!


Anonymous said...

I'd suggest the following for #11: Before becoming embroiled in litigation, take your potential adversary out for a drink, coffee, lunch, etc. to discuss the problem as a mutual problem to be resolved rather than a contest over rights and liabilities; power to force the other to accept the solution you have individually decided is best for you.

Anonymous said...
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