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Keep Construction Projects on Track With Experienced Legal Counsel

Anyone who works in property development and construction knows the havoc caused when projects are slowed or even derailed by defects, disputes, and other issues. It is vital to have an experienced construction lawyer in your corner to help spot and resolve potential problems before they sink a project.

At Southern Legal, our Fort Walton Beach construction lawyers advise property owners, developers, general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, and designers on a full range of legal issues. With nearly a century of combined experience, we are trusted advisors to clients throughout the region.

Construction Contracts

Legal agreements are a central part of any project. They are commonly used to outline the project, set deadlines, and ensure that everyone involved understands their rights and responsibilities.

Negotiating, drafting, and reviewing these contracts is an essential role of a construction lawyer. Once an agreement is signed, it is often difficult – if not impossible – to change the terms. If a project gets off track, the contract will typically be used to determine who is to blame, how the parties can move forward, and whether or not any party is entitled to compensation for the harm caused.

Our lawyers commonly negotiate, review, analyze, and draft legal agreements for construction clients, including architectural and construction management agreements. We also have specific experience with condominium agreements and the intricate web of laws that govern them.

Common Construction Disputes

Disputes can and do arise in a number of different ways during the lifespan of a construction project. Some of the most common issues include:

  • Breach of Contract: Construction disputes often revolve around whether the parties have lived up to their responsibilities under the relevant legal agreements.
  • Cost overruns: When costs balloon, builders and developers may not be on the same page regarding who is picking up the tab.
  • Projects Delays: Time is of the essence on many construction projects, and delays can lead to finger-pointing over who is to blame.
  • Construction Defects: Flaws in the physical construction may undermine the value of a property for investors and damage the reputation of the project.
  • Change Orders: Contracts should be drafted so that they clearly indicate how changes along the way are to be handled.
    Payments and Collections: Non-payment, partial payment, and late payment issues can stop a construction project in its tracks.
  • Subcontractor Changes: While these changes may be necessary for some situations, it is important to have guidelines established to ensure that the new subcontractor can perform work at a certain level of quality and efficiency.
  • Architect or Engineer Mistakes: Accusations of malpractice often do not arise until long after a project is completed.

The key is to identify potential issues on the front end and work proactively to resolve possible disputes before they morph into protracted litigation whenever possible. Our Fort Walton Beach construction lawyers have a proven track record of helping clients navigate legal issues and efficiently resolve disputes as they arise.

Construction Liens

Construction liens are common in payment disputes. They can be a valuable legal tool for contractors or subcontractors who have not been properly paid for their work on a project. Liens can also prove costly to property owners and investors, decreasing their property’s value and limiting the ability for it to be sold or further improved.

A lien acts as a security interest in the property for the contractor or subcontractor alleging nonpayment. That interest can stay on the property until the matter is resolved, effectively forcing the owner to pay to get the lien removed before the project can continue or be sold.

Experience and Expertise

Our firm offers individuals and businesses the opportunity to build a long-term relationship with experienced lawyers who have focused their careers on serving the construction industry.

Managing Partner Michael H. Crew is certified by the Florida Bar as a construction law expert. That is the highest recognition of competency and experience for Florida attorneys. Mr. Crew has been advising developers, builders, investors, and others in Fort Walton Beach and throughout Florida for over three decades.

How Our Fort Walton Beach Construction Lawyers Can Help

We are pleased to assist clients across the region in a full spectrum of construction law matters.

Our offices are conveniently located in Fort Walton Beach. We are proud to serve clients throughout the region, including in Okaloosa County, Walton County, Escambia County, Santa Rosa County, and Bay County. Call us at 850-244-0400 or contact us online to speak with an attorney.