Colm Nelson

Colm Nelson

Colm Nelson represents public owners, private owners and developers, general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, design professionals, brokers and lenders in a wide variety of construction transactions, construction litigation, procurement and real estate matters. He has more than 10 years of experience in the construction industry and negotiates complex construction and design contracts for public and private owners. Colm represents clients in disputes over bid protests, construction defects and property damage, extra work and delay claims, errors and omissions in design documents, tenant improvements, breach of warranty, insurance coverage against insurance companies and mechanic’s liens. He also has substantial experience handling procurement issues for public, quasi-public and private entities and related projects with respect to construction, services and goods.

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When to Have the Hard Talk About Setting Liquidated Damages

In my latest column for the Daily Journal of Commerce, I look at the concept of liquidated damages – in my experience one of the top five heavily negotiated (and litigated) clauses in a construction contract. Because a project owner’s potential delay damages are often difficult to determine with certainty at the beginning of a … Continue Reading

Construction Alert: Washington Court of Appeals’ Conway Opinion Provides New Guidance Regarding a Right to Cure, a Set-Off, and Recovery of Attorney Fees

In Conway Construction Company v. City of Puyallup, No. 80649-1-1 (May 4, 2020), the Washington Court of Appeals, Division 1, adopted Oregon’s Shelter Products, Inc. v. Steelwood Construction, Inc., precluding certain claims for defects in termination cases and limiting the justification for termination to those listed in the termination notice.  It also held that Washington’s … Continue Reading

COVID-19 Alert – Governor Jay Inslee Extends Stay at Home, Stay Healthy Proclamation Through May 4, 2020 and Delays Implementation of New State Building Code

On March 23, 2020, Governor Jay Inslee issued the Stay Home, Stay Healthy Proclamation (20‑25) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Originally, the Proclamation was to be in effect through April 8, 2020.  Despite Washington’s aggressive efforts to flatten the curve, on April 2, 2020, Governor Inslee announced his decision to extend the Proclamation through … Continue Reading

COVID-19 Update: Washington Governor Issues Construction Guidance Memorandum

On March 25, 2020, Washington Governor Jay Inslee issued a memorandum that provided members of the construction industry with additional guidance regarding the Stay Home, Stay Healthy Proclamation (20-25) issued on March 23, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Proclamation raised a number of questions in the industry, including whether all residential construction was deemed an essential … Continue Reading

Design-Build Lite – Construction Contracts with D-B Components

For most in the industry, when we think about a standard construction contract, we envision the construction documents being drafted by the architect and other design consultants.  We tend to view the project as design-price-build, unless an alternative procurement mechanism has been selected such as design-build.  Consistent with this design-price-build model, the contractor’s review of … Continue Reading

Commercial Lease Improvements

On December 13, 2019, I will be giving a presentation on construction-related topics arising from commercial lease improvements.  The presentation is part of a two-day seminar on Advanced Commercial Real Estate Leases, co-chaired by my colleague, John A. Fandel, and hosted by Law Seminars International.  Topic will include insurance coverage, mechanic’s liens, scheduling, indemnity, safety, … Continue Reading

I’m a Developer and My Contractor Refuses to Perform Work Without a Change Order. What Are My Options?

Over the duration of a construction project, changes to its scope are inevitable, and the easiest way to address such changes, and their potential impacts on scheduling and contract price, is for the project owner and the contractor to mutually execute a change order prior to implementing a change. However, for a variety of reasons, … Continue Reading
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