You Need a Construction Attorney in Florida
The mention of “construction” conjures images of workers with steel-toed boots in the blazing sun. However, before a single beam is lifted, the behind the scenes work begins. Laying the foundation before laying the foundation can ensure a healthy project from concept to opening day. Neglecting to hire experienced counsel can turn a considerable budget into an economical wreck from which a business may never recover.
When faced with the beginning of a construction project, consider hiring knowledgeable counsel to help you throughout the process, rather than in the throes of a catastrophe. Having a construction attorney in Florida available every step of the way safeguards your business decisions in different ways. Here are some examples.
Building development starts with an idea and leads to contracts: contracts to purchase land; contracts between employers and contractors; and contracts between the municipality/state and the business, to name a few. Contracts themselves require finesse and knowledge that one only gets from years of closely working with them. Signing your name to any document produced by any vendor opens you up to vast liability. Are there loopholes? Are you indemnifying the end product against poor workmanship? Are you taking on more legal responsibility than you should? Only qualified counsel can answer these questions.
All municipalities have rules regarding how structures can be built or the inside of existing structures can be rebuilt. Code compliance is key to a successful construction project because when the city inspector comes to audit or sign off on work, anything out of place can mean delays. Delays mean money lost and budget inflation. Additionally, code compliance helps you understand where easements lie or mineral deposits may be found, and to whom they may belong. Code compliance also addresses how many ramps must be installed, fire extinguishers must be available, and other necessary ins and outs that only someone versed in the industry would know. If counsel can advise you ahead of time what codes to be wary of, you can avoid costly setbacks and reconstruction that may otherwise be necessary.
Liens and Titles
Although closely related to contracts, liens and titles are beasts of different burdens. Liens can be filed by anyone, including your contractors and sub-contractors, against the construction you devise. If you do not pay liens in a timely fashion, lien holders can then sue you for your property. Likewise, if your property and edifice are not properly titled, third parties can attempt to take control of your assets. Either scenario can incur postponements and legal fees, both of which are detrimental to the final product.
Once the work is completed, the dust has been swept away, and the ribbon cutting ceremony has completed, you may notice that some work needs repair. Work may be covered under implied or express warranties, but counsel who has worked throughout the process would know for sure. Having an attorney available during the entire process means having someone know the benefits available to you should the need for repairs emerge.
If repair work is needed due to a contractor’s subpar workmanship, having an advocate who is fully knowledgeable of your entire project requires less work than hiring an attorney after the project is finished. Attorneys are required to maintain files for a certain number of years before destruction, which means having them on the case before there is a case can save you time and money in evidentiary procurement.
In the end, there is no way to guarantee that a construction project will be absolutely perfect, on time, and on budget. Having counsel available to oversee decisions and be at the ready should the plans go too far astray is an investment you cannot afford to neglect.
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