Litigation can be one of the most time-consuming and expensive ways to resolve disputes in the construction industry. Often, parties to construction-related disputes prefer to resolve them through alternate dispute resolution procedures, such as mediation or arbitration. However, sometimes litigation cannot be avoided. In his latest article in the Daily Journal of Commerce, Guy Randles outlines some lessons learned in construction-related litigation that can help parties avoid some of the most common litigation mistakes:
- pay attention in advance to legally important documents such as contracts, notices and change orders;
- document project events clearly and contemporaneously;
- ensure that internal communications and emails about claims and project events are worthy of disclosure;
- consider using arbitration where the triers of facts have a sophisticated construction background;
- try to resolve claims early in the process, including early and, if necessary, repeated mediation; and
- try to pick contracting parties who will avoid litigation in the first place or who will be reasonable in trying to resolve it if it does occur.
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