HardhatbLAWg is a construction blog with an emphasis on the law as it relates to construction (hence the name “bLAWg”). My focus is on Florida as that is where I mostly practice (I am also admitted in Georgia). I am Florida Bar Board Certified in Construction Law and have been practicing as a construction law attorney for over 25 years. If you would like to learn more about my experience, visit my bio page.
Many construction law blogs are aimed at other construction lawyers like me. That’s great. But my aim is to provide practical insights based on my years of practice in construction law and invite you to contact me if you need the assistance of an experienced construction attorney.
Some of the topics I will cover include:
- Notices to Owner – Owners
- Notices to Owner – Lienors
- Notices of Commencement
- What happens when a construction lien is filed
- Termination or Abandonment of a Job
- Contractor warranty obligations
Florida Construction Lien Law
Chapter 713 of the Florida Statutes contains Florida’s construction lien law (formerly called the mechanic’s lien law). It is very complex. The idea behind the lien law is that laborers and material suppliers should be paid for their work or materials and should have a lien against the owner’s property if they are not paid. The problem created by liens is that, if the owner is not careful, the owner may be required to pay twice – once to the general contractor and a second time to the subcontractor or supplier who filed the lien. The lien law has protections built in to help owners protect their property from liens and avoid paying twice. The lien law also provides rules for lienors to follow in order to protect their lien or bond rights. These topics will be covered in future posts.
Another big topic of concern is the subject of construction defects. Many people operate under the assumption that a house is under warranty for one year and that anything that comes up after one year is the owner’s problem. The reality is far more complex. In Florida, the “statute of repose” (which places an outside limit on the statute of limitations) on a claim for construction defects is generally ten years from the date the construction is complete. So issues that arise with construction many years after it is complete can and do result in litigation. If you are an owner and have detected a potential defect with your property, you should act quickly because once you are on notice of an issue, generally speaking the statute of limitations starts to run. For contractors, it is important to know your potential liability so you can take steps to protect your company from financial ruin if a subcontractor’s defective work causes you to be sued. In future posts, I will outline those steps owners and contractors can take to protect themselves.
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The articles on this blog are intended to provide information of general interest to the public and are not intended to offer legal advice about specific situations or problems. GrayRobinson does not intend to create an attorney-client relationship by offering this information, and anyone’s review of the information shall not be deemed to create such a relationship. You should consult a lawyer if you have a legal matter requiring attention.