Newport Beach Construction Dispute Lawyers

Newport Beach 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 Newport Beach, California, whether it's a house, some landscaping, or a remodeling project, there is always a chance that something can go wrong. In fact, at least a very minor setback may be more likely than not.

Most often, the owners of land and contractors can end disputes before they get too serious, thus eliminating the need for litigation. Most contracts governing construction projects have built-in remedies for the most common problems, usually requiring the party that causes a delay or other problem to pay the other party a set fee.

Even if the parties can't easily resolve their disputes, and someone else needs to intervene, that somebody doesn't always need to be a judge or jury. Many construction disputes call for mediation, during which a neutral third party helps the parties to the dispute negotiate a settlement. They might also go through arbitration, during which a third party renders a binding decision.

Because of the large cost in time and money involved, litigation in Newport Beach, California is considered a last resort. However, in rare cases, it does become necessary.

Examples of Construction Disputes That Might Lead to Litigation in Newport Beach, California

Delays: Some minor delays in a construction project are all but guaranteed to occur. Usually, if contracts require a specific completion date, the contractor will give itself longer than the project would take under ideal circumstances, to account for possible delays. Furthermore, construction contracts usually attempt to insure against delays, such as imposing fees on contractors if the project is delayed beyond a certain point. If no such clause is included in a contract, a court will usually award the client damages that could have been reasonably anticipated at the time the contract was entered into.

Refusal to Pay: Contractors can be on the other side of legal disputes, as well. Sometimes, the landowners who hired them refuse to pay. This is usually because the landowner believes that the contractor didn't perform under the terms of the contract, or that the work was unsatisfactory. If this is the case, it may ultimately be up to a court to decide who is right. If the contractor did, in fact, do poor work, the landowner will be excused, at least in part, from his duty to pay. If, on the other hand, the work was satisfactory, the court will order the landowner to pay the contract price immediately, and may award additional damages if the refusal to pay was done in bad faith, or if it caused foreseeable economic harm to the contractor.

Subcontractor Disputes: In large projects, contractors often can't handle every aspect of the construction, so they hire other (usually smaller) contractors to do some specialized work for them, such as plumbing, electrical installations, and the like. The general contractor, however, is responsible to the owner for anything that goes wrong. If a subcontractor messes up, and the owner sues the contractor, the contractor will have to pay. However, the contractor can then go after the subcontractor to recover whatever he had to pay.

Mechanic's Lien: When a contractor wins a lawsuit against a client for nonpayment of the contract price, and the client still refuses to pay, there is a problem: a monetary judgment means next to nothing if it can't be enforced. To solve this problem, the mechanic's lien has been developed. Essentially, if a landowner refuses to pay a contractor, even in the face of a court order, the court can force a sale of the property that the contractor worked on, along with all the improvements on it, and then give the proceeds to the contractor, to secure payment.

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Can a Newport Beach, California Attorney Help?

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

116 Real Estate, Housing & Property Law cases posted to LegalMatch lawyers in Newport Beach

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Life in Newport Beach

Newport Beach, California is a city in Orange County. It is about 10 miles south of Santa Ana, and has a population of about 85,000 people.

Newport Beach is an extremely affluent community. More than a quarter of its households have an annual income exceeding $200,000 per year, and the median home value is approximately $1 million.

The economy of Newport Beach, California is dominated by healthcare, insurance, retail, and other services. One Fortune 500 company, Pacific Life Insurance, is headquartered in Newport Beach, and employs over 1,500 people, including several Newport Beach, California lawyers.

Residents of Newport Beach, California who find themselves in need of legal services are in luck. Newport Beach, California attorneys tend to be very sophisticated and highly experienced, meaning that a Newport Beach, California lawyer can help you with almost any legal issue a person is likely to face.

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