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Construction Law Musings: You Have Choices (Litigation Versus Mediation)

As I sit here thinking about an impending trial in the Goochland County General District Court, it hit me that I also serve as a mediator in that court from time to time. Coincidentally, I will be “wearing both hats” (litigator and mediator) this week on back to back days. It will be interesting...

Some Construction Contract Basics- Necessities and Pitfalls

Recently, I’ve been on an “advising” kick here at Construction Law Musings. My last two posts have been about communication and trusting your gut when it comes to a smooth construction project. This post will be the third in the trilogy (and who knows maybe I’ll have a 4th and...

Is Arbitration Okay Under the Miller Act? It Is if You Don’t Object

I have discussed both payment bond claims under the Miller Act and alternate dispute resolution (ADR) here at Construction Law Musings on many an occasion. A question that is sometimes open is what to do when there is contractually mandated arbitration for claims “relating to the contract or the...

To Require Arbitration or Not To Require Arbitration

Many, if not most, construction contracts that I review during the course of my practice day include a mandatory arbitration clause. Most of these refer in a blanket manner to AAA Construction Industry Rules. The topic for this post is not whether such clauses are enforceable or whether they are one...

Construction Law 2014: A Year in Review – RESCHEDULED DUE TO WEATHER

Due to the weather for Thursday, March 5, 2015, Babst Calland’s Construction Law 2014: The Year in Review seminar has been rescheduled and will now be held on Wednesday, March 25, 2015. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you, and we hope that you will be able to join us on this new...

Anatomy of a Construction Dispute- An Alternative

Over the past three weeks, I’ve discussed three “stages” of a construction dispute from the claim , to how to increase the pressure for payment, to the litigation . While these three steps are all too often necessary tools in your construction collection arsenal, they are expensive...

More Musings From the Mediation Trenches

As those that read this construction blog on a regular basis know, I became a Virginia Supreme Court certified mediator a few years ago. I did so because I believe that mediation as a form of alternate dispute resolution is in most cases a much better alternative to resolve a construction dispute than...

Recent Revisions to AAA Rules

By Brett Saunders Think about the last major construction project you or your company was involved in. Chances are, that project was being performed under a contract that contained an arbitration clause. These clauses require disputes to be resolved through binding arbitration, instead of traditional...

When Is Mandatory Arbitration Not Mandatory?

I have discussed my views on mandatory mediation in construction contracts at other places here at Musings and also discussed how the contract is king here in Virginia . A recent Charlottesville, Virginia Circuit Court case, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis...

Alert: AAA Construction Industry Rules Update

The American Arbitration Association has made some needed updates to their Construction Industry Arbitration and Mediation Rules, effective July 1, 2015. Among the changes listed at their website are: • A mediation step for all cases with claims of $100,000 or more (subject to the ability of...

Important Changes to the AAA Construction Industry Mediation and Arbitration Rules

By W. Alexander Burnett , Partner, Williams Mullen Introduction The American Arbitration Association (“AAA”) is one of the primary providers of alternative dispute resolution, such as mediation and arbitration, in the United States. Many construction contracts call for disputes to be...

Mediation in the Zero Sum World of Construction

Construction is a zero sum game. What do I mean by that? I mean that even where you, a construction professional with a great construction lawyer , have reviewed and edited a subcontract presented to you or provided a well drafted contract to the other party that contains an attorney fees provision ...