Costa Mesa Construction Dispute Lawyers

Costa Mesa Construction Dispute Lawyers, CA

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Construction Dispute Law in California

When a property owner and a general contractor contract for a construction project to take place on some property in Costa Mesa, California, whether it's a house, some landscaping, or a remodeling project, there is always a gamble that something can go wrong. In fact, at least a very minor setback may be more likely than not.

Most often, landowners and construction contractors are able to resolve minor to moderate disputes between themselves, and litigation is rarely necessary. Nobody likes litigation, so, to this end, most construction contracts have built-in remedies in case something goes wrong, like set price reductions if construction is delayed.

Even if disagreements can't be resolved amongst the parties to the contract, they don't need to take their dispute into the court system. For instance, construction contracts typically call for mediation or arbitration before any disputes are resolved by the courts. Mediation is a process by which a third party serves as a sort of intermediary in settlement negotiations between the parties to the contract. The mediator can help keep negotiations on track, and suggest possible solutions the parties might not have thought of. The mediator can't issue a binding decision, however. Arbitration is a process through which the parties agree to have their dispute resolved by a third party, which can render a binding decision. Arbitration can be faster and cheaper than litigation, and it has some other advantages, as well.

Litigation of construction disputes in Costa Mesa, California can be extremely time-consuming, stressful, and costly. Nevertheless, there are (relatively rare) occurrences where it is the only option.

Examples of Construction Disputes That Might Lead to Litigation in Costa Mesa, California

Delays: If the contractor is culpable in a major delay in a construction project (a delay of weeks or months, for example), a lawsuit could result. If the contract specifically states that completion by a specific date is very important, or the builder has a good reason to know this, a court will often award the owner compensation for any economic harm caused by a delay.

Owner's Refusal to Pay: If the contractor completes the project, and the owner refuses to pay the agreed-upon price, the contractor will typically file a lawsuit to recover what is owed. Of course, the owner will typically claim that there is a good reason for not paying, arguing that the contractor didn't conform to the project's specifications, or that the quality of construction was unacceptably poor. In such a case, the court will have to determine if the contractor actually breached the contract by doing shoddy work, which could, at least in part, excuse the owner's duty to pay.

Subcontractors: With big construction projects, contractors typically hire other, smaller contractors to do some of the work for them. This is typically work of a specialized nature, which the general contractor isn't equipped to handle (such as plumbing or electrical wiring). The general contractor is the one who is responsible for the satisfactory completion of the project. If a subcontractor makes a mistake, or causes a delay, the general contractor is ultimately liable to the person who hired them. However, if they are sued for the mistakes of a subcontractor, and lose, they can then sue the subcontractor to recover their losses.

Mechanic's Liens: If the contractor sues a land owner and wins, he will likely obtain a monetary judgment. If the owner refuses to pay, the contractor needs some way to recover. This is where the mechanic's lien comes into play. It permits a contractor to force the sale of the land or other real property that he just worked on, and use those proceeds to cover costs.

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Can a Costa Mesa, California Attorney Help?

Disputes over construction delays or defects can be extremely taxing. Therefore, getting an efficient Costa Mesa, California real estate attorney might mean the difference between success or failure in your business ventures.

195 Real Estate, Housing & Property Law cases posted to LegalMatch lawyers in Costa Mesa

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Life in Costa Mesa

Costa Mesa, California is a city in Orange County. Its population is currently 110,000 people.

Costa Mesa, California was founded in 1953. It was primarily a rural community at its founding, and it gradually transitioned into a suburban "edge" community with a strong economy based on commerce, retail, and light manufacturing.

The largest commercial center in Costa Mesa is the South Coast Plaza, a shopping center of over 300 stores. It is known for its unique architecture and large size. Consumers spend well over 1 billion dollars per year, providing a major driving force of Costa Mesa's economy. The owners of the shopping center typically need legal representation when negotiating and finalizing lease agreements with tenants. The owners, as well as prospective tenants, employ or retain large numbers of Costa Mesa, California attorneys.

If you need to find legal advice in Costa Mesa, California, you should start by seeking out a qualified attorney in Costa Mesa. A Costa Mesa lawyer can probably help you with whatever legal issue you may be facing.

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