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Be Aware of Two New Statutes that Became Effective May 1, 2021

On May 1, 2021, two new statutes that passed in 2020 and that directly affect construction became effective.  I’ve used the AGC-VA description of the bills and encourage you to read the statutes in full. Prevailing Wage Starting May 1, 2021, Virginia’s new prevailing wage statute takes effect. This statute requires any contractor bidding on state procurement jobs to pay prevailing wages for work completed on the project. Further, localities and some institutes of higher education have the option...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Construction, PLA, VDOT, Richmond VA, Construction Law, Construction Mediation, Business of Construction, Virginia Construction Lawyer, AGCVA, AGC VA, Prevailing Wage, Project Labor Agreement


Announcement: New Email Subscription Service

Recently Google has changed its Feedburner services and eliminated email subscriptions as one of the Feedburner offerings.  Because of this change, I have moved the email subscriptions (though not the RSS) database over to MailChimp.  Those of you that already have subscribed via email in the old system should continue to get updates with each new post here at Construction Law Musings.  If you are not receiving these updates, whether because of an email change or “operator error” on my part, ple...
Tags: Google, Law, Marketing, Construction, Announcements, Feedburner, Chris, Richmond VA, Virginia Construction Mediator, Construction Law Musings, Social Media For Lawyers, Construction Attorney, Email Subscription, New Email Subscription Service


More thoughts on Virginia Mechanic’s Liens

Originally posted 2010-04-30 09:00:16. As we settled yet another construction case on the courthouse steps today, I began to think about what I should post to begin 2009. Of course, given the construction industry slowdown that is predicted, and the trend at construction projects around the Commonwealth of Virginia that looks to me as if payments will be harder to come by from Owners less willing, for financial reasons, to work with contractors, mechanic’s liens will be more useful, and necessa...
Tags: Real Estate, Law, Virginia, Contract, Construction, Lawyer, Attorney, Richmond, Contractor, Richmond VA, Lien, Construction Law, Mechanic's Liens, Business of Construction, Mechanic Liens, Mechanic's Lien


English v. RKK- There is Even More to the Story

Just when you thought that the litigation between W. C. English and RKK had no more to give (after all, there have been posts with wisdom from this case here, here, and here), it keeps on giving.  A involved, among other pre-trial motions, motions by English to exclude expert witness testimony.  English sought to exclude Defendant CDM Smith, Inc’s expert testimony relating to CDM’s standard of care, the replacement of the bridge deck, English’s failure to fire CDM, and additional contributing ...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Court, Construction, Contracts, Richmond VA, Rummel, Construction Law, Business of Construction, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Construction Mediator, English Construction, Expert Witness, English v RKK, Defendant CDM Smith Inc


If You Think Only Lawyers Preach a Good Contract

Originally posted 2013-07-30 09:00:41. Contracts (Photo credit: NobMouse) Here at Construction Law Musings, we always preach that a good contract is the best way to start a project off right.  No only do the Virginia courts enforce these contracts to a “T,” a well drafted contract can and does set the expectations for both sides so that those wonderful grey areas that we construction attorneys love to play in do not exist. A good construction contract sets expectations, educates those that...
Tags: Business, Law, Virginia, Contract, Construction, Lawyer, Contracts, Michael Stone, Richmond VA, Stone, Construction Law, Business of Construction, Construction Law Musings, Courts of Virginia, Constructionlaw, Va Construction Attorney


“Source of Duty,” Tort, and Contract, Oh My!

Here at Construction Law Musings, I have discussed the general rule in Virginia that tort and contract do not mix.  I have also discussed a few narrow exceptions.  A Virginia Supreme Court case from October of 2019 lays out both sides of this issue in one glorious opinion. In , a summary of the facts and lawsuit(s) are as follows:  Water leaks developed after the home was built. Graystone’s post-construction efforts to repair the leaks and remediate mold were unsuccessful. The Tinglers and thei...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Court, Contracts, George, Circuit Court, Virginia Supreme Court, Richmond VA, Belle Meade, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Business of Construction, Graystone, The Virginia Supreme Court, Virginia Construction Contract, Virginia Mediator


PSA: Virginia Adopts Permanent COVID Workplace Standard

The Commonwealth of Virginia passed a temporary emergency workplace standard relating to COVID that became effective as of July 27, 2020.  Just this past week, effective January 27, 2021, Virginia has enacted a permanent workplace standard.  This new and permanent 58-page standard is set forth in and includes most of what was in the temporary standard with some new exclusions, among them: No enforcement actions will be brought against employers that are making good-faith efforts to secure Per...
Tags: Law, Cdc, Virginia, Construction, Workplace Safety, Richmond VA, Standard of Care, Virginia Department of Health, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Business of Construction, Doli, Construction Mediator, COVID, Virginia Dept of Labor and Industry


The Picky Nature of Mechanic’s Liens (or Why you need to count back from 150 before filing)

Originally posted 2009-03-30 09:00:00. On numerous occasions here at Musings I have discussed the almost ridiculously picky nature of mechanic’s liens in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The so called “150 day rule” found in Virginia Code Section 43-4 is no exception. The 150 day rule means that a contractor or material man can only include in a mechanic’s lien money due for labor or materials provided within 150 days of the date of filing of the lien or the last day that labor or materials are pr...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Massachusetts, Lawyer, Attorney, Richmond, Virginia Supreme Court, Richmond VA, Lien, Construction Law, Mechanic's Liens, Business of Construction, Mechanic Liens, Mechanic's Lien, Andrea Goldman, Scott Wolfe


I’m Adding Arbitration to my ADR Services

Readers of this construction law blog know that I am a huge fan of mediation to resolve construction disputes.  In that vein, I became a certified mediator and have provided mediation services for quite a while now.  I have also had mixed feelings about arbitration as a required means of alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”) because arbitration can become just as expensive and bulky as litigation if the parties are not careful with the drafting of their arbitration clauses.  However, arbitratio...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Construction, Richmond, Richmond VA, ADR, Construction Mediation, Virginia Construction Attorney, Construction Arbitration, Virginia Construction Arbitrator, Law Office of Christopher G Hill PC Having


Construction Related Legislative Changes Effective July 1, 2013

Originally posted 2013-07-01 09:00:22. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Every year at this time, a new set of statutes comes into effect.  This year is no different.  If you are a fan (or at least follower) of the Virginia General Assembly and have an interest in construction, you have likely kept informed about some of the various statutory changes that will take place today (and probably a few that were attempted and killed). This year (and as summarized below), the Virginia legislators made cha...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Construction, Contracts, Richmond Virginia, Virginia General Assembly, Richmond VA, Construction Law, Mechanic's Liens, General contractor, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Mechanic's Lien, Construction Law Musings, Constructionlaw, Wikipedia Every


Another Reminder that Contracts are Powerful in Virginia

Regular readers of this construction law blog are likely tired of my refrain that the contract is king here in Virginia.  With few exceptions, some of which have been passed in the last few years, the contract can and does essentially set the “law” for the transaction.  A recent opinion from the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals confirms this principle. In , the Court looked at the question as to whether parties can contractually limit the statute of limitations in which a plaintiff or arbitration...
Tags: Maryland, Law, Virginia, Construction, Statute Of Limitations, Contracts, Don, EEOC, Lancaster, Richmond VA, ADR, 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Construction Arbitration, Bracey


Talking Mediation at AEC Forensics

Originally posted 2017-08-14 09:23:20. Thank you to my friend and relatively frequent guest poster here at Construction Law Musings, Brian Hill (@aecforensics) for letting me invade his great blog on risk management and best construction practices, AECforensics.com, and talk about one of my favorite topics, mediation.  As I have said on many an occasion, mediation is often the most efficient and cost effective way out of a bad situation (read: construction claim).  I share these thoughts in mor...
Tags: Law, Brian, Construction, Richmond VA, ADR, Brian Hill, Construction Mediation, Virginia Construction Mediator, Construction Attorney, AEC Forensics, Alternative Mediation


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

Originally posted 2014-10-13 09:15:01. Map of the United States District Courts in Virginia (Photo credit: Wikipedia) 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 work.” While here in Virginia, as in most places, the courts will almost automa...
Tags: Law, Wikipedia, Virginia, Court, Contract, Construction, Norfolk, Contracts, Arbitration, Richmond VA, United States District Court, ADR, Virginia Federal Court, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Alternative dispute resolution


Time is of the Essence, Even When the Contract Doesn’t Say So

Welcome to 2021!  As often happens here at Construction Law Musings, the year starts with a few posts on notable construction law cases that dropped in the past year or so.  Not only does this review hopefully help you keep up, but helps me keep up with the latest developments (one of the reasons why I keep blogging). The first of these cases is out of the Western District of Virginia federal court. In this case, Wagman Heavy Civil, Inc. (“Wagman”) and the Virginia Department of  Transportatio...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Court, Contracts, VDOT, Richmond VA, Virginia Department of Transportation, APCO, Wagman, Supreme Court of Virginia, Western District of Virginia, Construction Law, Construction Mediation, Virginia Construction Attorney, Business of Construction, Construction Contract


Legislative Changes that Impact Construction 2017

Originally posted 2017-05-09 10:56:18. Virginia General Assembly (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Well, the Virginia General Assembly has finished its yearly run through the legislative process and this year there are a few highlights for those of us in the construction industry.  It is always interesting to see what issues are the big ones that get a lot of attention.  This year the changes impacted public procurement, VOSH fines, and employment of unlicensed individuals on a job site.  These cha...
Tags: Law, Senate, Virginia, Construction, Bill, General Assembly, Virginia General Assembly, Richmond VA, AGC, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Business of Construction, Virginia Construction Mediator, Virginia Construction Statutes, Wikipedia Well the Virginia General Assembly


Happy 2021 from Construction Law Musings

Phew! We made it through 2020. Needless to say, this year has been an “interesting” (in the Chinese curse sort of way) year.  While the year started strong, COVID created some hurdles for the construction industry in Virginia.  Everything from new emergency regulations, to the need to be extremely careful with your notices, and keeping track of claim deadlines in the face of court closures and Virginia Supreme Court orders dominated the construction legal and business landscape.  Even my solo...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Construction, Announcements, General Assembly, Virginia Supreme Court, Richmond VA, Legislative Committee, Construction Law, Construction Mediation, Virginia Construction Attorney, Business of Construction, Virginia Mechanic's Lien, Construction Contracts, Associated General Contractors of Virginia


Happy Holidays from Construction Law Musings

We’re nearing the end of a crazy (to say the least) 2020 and family time is at a premium.  Happily, my recent college graduate and her fiance are joining the rest of us (including my college senior) for some Christmas cheer while Musings takes some holiday R & R. I wish you all Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas from The Law Office of Christopher G. Hill, PC and Construction Law Musings. To all of my friends, colleagues, and most importantly, family, I hope you have a safe, warm, and wonderful ...
Tags: Law, Construction, Richmond VA, Law Office of Christopher G Hill PC


More Thoughts on “Green” (the Practice, not the Color) Building

Originally posted 2015-06-16 13:00:57. 20110504-RD-LSC-0654 (Photo credit: USDAgov) It has been a while since I “mused” on the green building landscape.  While I am a LEED AP and have presented on green (read “sustainable”) building in the past, I am not totally sold on LEED as the be all end all in sustainable construction (the USGBC is a private rating organization that, like the rest of us, is imperfect).  I’ve also discussed, both here and elsewhere, the potential risks that come with a...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Sustainability, Green Building, Construction, Matt, Richmond VA, LEED, USGBC, US Green Building Council, Green Building Council, Green Globes, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, LEED AP, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design


Yet Another Reminder that Tort and Contract Don’t Mix

I have stated on numerous occasions here at Musings that in Virginia, contract claims and tort claims (read fraud) don’t mix.  A recent case from the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia presents another example of this principle.  In , Judge Ellis of the Alexandria Division, considered ITility’s claims of fraud and breach of contract against SRG and one of its officers based upon SRG’s alleged violation of its duties under a teaming agreement.  The claim by ITility was t...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Court, Fraud, Construction, Contracts, Ellis, Richmond VA, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, SRG, Construction Mediator, Constracts, Source Of Duty Rule, Alexandria Division, TSRG


Thanks for the Guest Post Opportunities

Originally posted 2012-09-07 09:00:58. Photo credit: Wikipedia Here we are on Guest Post Friday and I thought that I’d take a moment to thank those that have allowed me the privilege of providing guest posts at their sites over the last few months.  I always appreciate the chance to share some thoughts with readers of great blogs like the Zlien blog and ALPS411 among others.  I count the folks at these and other blogs as friends and I hope that you will check out my posts there as well as t...
Tags: Law, Wikipedia, Blog, United States, North Carolina, Richmond VA, Guest Post Friday, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Mechanic's Liens, Business of Construction, Construction Law Musings, Geedra, Zlien, Constructionlaw, Construction Law Blog


12 Years of Construction Law Musings? Time Sure Flies!

12 years ago this tiny announcement post started my journey into blogging (or is it “blawging”?).  Since then, I’ve met a few construction lawyers here in Virginia that refer to me as the “blog guy.”  To be recognized for the work I do here at Construction Law Musings, something that benefits me (and I hope the readers), is an honor. The blog has since taken on a life of its own in many respects, allowing me to meet some of the great construction pros that have provided a guest post or two for...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Construction, Announcements, Richmond VA, Hill House, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Construction Law Musings, Associated General Contractors of Virginia, Virginia Mediator, Legislative Committee Of


Is Privity of Contract with the Owner a Requirement of a Valid Mechanic’s Lien? Nope.

As any reader of this construction law blog know, mechanic’s liens make up much of the discussion here at Construction Law Musings.  A recent case out of Fairfax County, Virginia examined the question of whether contractual privity between the general contractor and owner of the property at issue is necessary.  As a reminder, in most situations, for a contract claim to be made, the claimant has to have a direct contract (privity) with the entity it sues.  Further, for a subcontractor to have a v...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Court, Construction, Contracts, Fairfax, Virginia General Assembly, Richmond VA, Lien, Fairfax County Virginia, Construction Law, Mechanic's Liens, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Virginia Mechanic's Lien, Construction Mediator, Privity Of Contract


Is Privity of Contract with the Owner a Requirement of a Valid Mechanic’s Lien? Not for GC’s

As any reader of this construction law blog knows, mechanic’s liens make up much of the discussion here at Construction Law Musings.  A recent case out of Fairfax County, Virginia examined the question of whether contractual privity between the general contractor and owner of the property at issue is necessary.  As a reminder, in most situations, for a contract claim to be made, the claimant has to have a direct contract (privity) with the entity it sues.  Further, for a subcontractor to have a ...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Court, Construction, Contracts, Fairfax, Virginia General Assembly, Richmond VA, Lien, Fairfax County Virginia, Construction Law, Mechanic's Liens, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Virginia Mechanic's Lien, Construction Mediator, Privity Of Contract


Another Exception to Fraud and Contract Don’t Mix

Originally posted 2013-05-27 09:00:37. Map of Virginia highlighting Loudoun County (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Here at Construction Law Musings, we’ve discussed the fact that, in Virginia, the “economic loss rule” generally renders claims of fraud and construction contracts like oil and water. This is true in most states, including Florida. What this means is that as a general rule where any party is supposed to perform under a contract, and fails to do so, the Virginia courts will dismiss a ...
Tags: Florida, Law, Wikipedia, Virginia, Court, Contract, Construction, Contracts, Richmond VA, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Attorney, Construction Law Musings, Constructionlaw, Loudoun County Virginia, Virginia Lawyers Weekly, Madisons


Thank You for 14 Consecutive Years of Legal Elite Elections

Thanks to the Virginia legal community that has continued to elect me to the Virginia Business Legal Elite in the Construction Law Category for 14 years running.  The 14 consecutive years of election to the Legal Elite in the Construction Category spans my time as a solo construction attorney.  The fact that you all have continued to elect “100%” of the lawyers at The Law Office of Christopher G. Hill, PC for the last 10 years is most gratifying and only confirms that my decision to “go solo” ov...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Marketing, Announcements, Chris, Richmond VA, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Virginia Construction Mediator, Law Office of Christopher G Hill PC, Virginia Business Legal Elite, Virginia Legal Elite 2020


Happy Thanksgiving from Construction Law Musings

COVID has thrown us all for a loop this year.  With all of the changes, from a personal perspective, I will be glad to have some Thanksgiving downtime with my family to reflect on the important things in life (my great family being at the top of the list). From Construction Law Musings and The Law Office of Christopher G. HIll, PC, here’s hoping that all of the readers of the construction blog have a safe, relaxing, and wonderful Thanksgiving. As always, I welcome your comments below.  Please s...
Tags: Thanksgiving, Law, Announcements, Richmond VA, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Mediator, Construction Lawyer


Upcoming Webinar Provides Insights from Leading Construction General Counsel

While I don’t often provide direct links like this to non-Virginia based webinars, etc. I thought I’d help out my friend and colleague, Brian Perlberg of ConsensusDOCS with a shout out to his new site, Construction Law Online, and his latest offering. What if you had access to the insights of the top general counsel from five of the largest construction companies for 90 minutes and could get CE credit for it? The Chief Legal Officers from Hensel Phelps, Gilbane, Balfour Beatty, Burns and McDonal...
Tags: Law, Virginia, Construction, Announcements, McDonald, Richmond VA, AGC, Construction Law, Virginia Construction Lawyer, ConsensusDOCS, Brian Perlberg, Construction Counsel, Hensel Phelps Gilbane Balfour Beatty Burns


Is Moving Away from Construction Bonding Requirements a Good Idea?

Originally posted 2011-07-25 09:00:48. Image via Wikipedia Recently, the legal/construction blogosphere (if that’s still a word) has been discussing a move by Ohio State University to eliminate the need for construction payment and performance bonds on public projects for the university.  Needless to say, this move is not popular with certain portions of the construction industry.  In fact the Surety and Fidelity Association of America (SFAA) and the American Subcontractors Association ...
Tags: Law, Wikipedia, Virginia, Construction, Contracts, Osu, Ohio State University, Richmond VA, Public Works, Construction Law, Business of Construction, General contractor, Doug Reiser, Bond Claims, Chris Cheatham, American Subcontractors Association


You Have Choices (Litigation Versus Mediation)

Originally posted 2013-10-29 09:30:50. Map of Virginia highlighting Goochland County (Photo credit: Wikipedia) 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 to have to switch roles so quickly on back to back days. While I don’t have the resul...
Tags: Lawsuit, Law, Wikipedia, Virginia, Construction, Lawyer, Richmond VA, ADR, Mediation, Dispute Resolution, Construction Law, General contractor, Virginia Construction Lawyer, Mechanic's Lien, Constructionlaw, Goochland County Photo


Yes, Virginia, Contract Terms Do Matter: Financing Term Offers Owner an Escape Hatch

Originally posted 2009-09-25 09:00:00. For this week’s Guest Post Friday, Musings welcomes Timothy R. Hughes, Esq., LEED AP.  Tim (@vaconstruction on Twitter) is Of Counsel to the Arlington, Virginia firm of Bean, Kinney & Korman, P.C. In his practice as a business, corporate, and construction law attorney, Tim served as the previous Chair of the Construction Law and Public Contracts Section of the Virginia State Bar. He has served in numerous volunteer, board and leadership roles with such or...
Tags: New York, Law, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Guest Post, Construction, Norfolk, Contracts, Attorney, Turner, Contractor, Hatch, Tim, Richmond VA, Arlington Virginia, JFK International Airport



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