Atlanta Attorneys Representing Owners, Developers, Architects, Contractors, and Subcontractors
Construction projects often involve coordinating multiple contracts and managing the goals and obligations of numerous parties. While certain challenges may be anticipated and quickly worked out in the construction of a building, in some instances, issues will arise that cannot be settled without legal intervention. If you are involved in a construction dispute, it is advisable to speak to our Atlanta construction litigation attorneys to protect your interests. At Poole Huffman, we are experienced in helping clients, including owners, developers, architects, engineers, contractors, and subcontractors resolve a broad range of construction disputes in Atlanta, as well as in Tucker, Decatur, and throughout Georgia.
Recovering Damages Following a Construction Dispute
Although numerous scenarios can lead to construction disputes, most issues encountered during construction projects arise out of the breach of a construction contract, negligent construction, or fraud. Typically, disagreements on construction projects occur between the owner of the property and the general contractor, but they can also exist between the general contractor and a subcontractor. Generally, the aggrieved party’s burden of proof, the timeframe within which the aggrieved party can pursue compensation, and the damages recoverable, will vary depending on what claims the aggrieved party asserts.
Breach of Contract
In construction projects, the owner of the project will typically sign a contract with the general contractor, and the general contractor will subcontract the work to plumbing, HVAC, roofing, carpentry, electrical or other special trade contractors. Regardless of whether a contract is between an owner and a contractor or between two contractors, if one party fails to uphold its end of the agreement, the other party may be eligible to recover damages. Some contracts include a provision for alternate dispute resolution. A construction litigation lawyer in Atlanta can review your contract and determine whether it requires the construction dispute to be mediated or arbitrated. In Georgia, a party alleging a breach of contract must demonstrate the existence of a valid contract, a breach of the material terms of the contract, and damages resulting from the breach. Specifically, the party alleging a breach of contract must cite the specific contractual provision that was violated and must show that its losses were directly attributable to the failure to comply with the provision. Actions that give rise to a breach of contract claim include the failure to perform work as indicated by the terms of the contract and failure to compensate a general contractor or subcontractor in the time indicated under the contract.
In a breach of contract claim, one of the parties in a construction project alleges that another failed to perform its contractual duties. In contrast, a negligent construction claim asserts that the other party performed its contractual duties, but improperly. To recover damages under a negligent construction claim in Georgia, a party must show that a general contractor, subcontractor, or another party, had a duty to perform tasks on a project in compliance with the applicable standard of care, a breach of the duty, and harm that arose from the breach. Examples of acts that may constitute negligent construction are forgetting to install rebar in a basement and failing to properly prepare the ground before pouring a foundation, both of which can lead to shifting and crumbling of walls within a property. Our Atlanta construction litigation lawyers can review the circumstances and determine the optimal path for efficiently resolving the dispute.
In contrast to a negligent construction claim, in which a party alleges harm due to careless acts, a claim alleging fraud in the construction or remodeling of a home alleges harm caused by intentional acts. A construction fraud claim in Georgia requires a party to show a false representation was made to the party with the intention of inducing the party to act or refrain from acting. The party must also show justifiable reliance on the representation and damages caused by the reliance. Typically, fraud claims related to the construction or remodeling of a property arise when a contractor promises the owner of a property that it will use a specific grade of materials or provide certain services despite having no intention of doing so, and the property owner pays the contractor based on the contractor’s promises, after which the contractor absconds with the property owner’s money.
Speak to an Experienced Construction Litigation Attorney in Atlanta
Construction projects that begin well can quickly become problematic, and construction disputes are often both costly and stressful. If you were involved in a construction project that went awry the experienced lawyers of Poole Huffman can assist you in protecting your rights. From our office in Tucker, we regularly represent parties in construction litigation cases in Atlanta, Decatur, and throughout Georgia. We also handle construction lawsuits throughout Fulton, DeKalb, Cobb, and Gwinnett Counties. You can contact us though our online form or by calling us at 404-373-4008 to set up a confidential consultation.
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