Understanding the legislation and the impact of contract terms on construction projects and building works is a complex process. It is an area that requires the perfect marriage of good legal skills and a thorough understanding of the imperatives and typical pain points in the building sector. These particular skillsets and expertise can be found when you employ an experienced construction lawyer at Nevett Ford. Our Director – Property & Commercial Department has qualifications in project management and represented developers as a Development Manager for several years and has that blend of project experience and legal knowledge.
In this article, we will look at the different ways a construction lawyer can help with your building project needs.
What does a construction lawyer do?
Construction and property lawyers in Melbourne work across the contracting chain, advising and supporting small and large builders, contractors and subcontractors as well as property owners and developers.
Legal issues and disputes about risk and contract interpretation can end up slowing down a project – whether it is a large scale civil works contract or a residential renovation. Either way, they cost both time and money, which is why it is always a good idea to engage with construction lawyers at the outset to avoid delays and ensure the contracts define scope and allocate responsibility accurately. When problems relating to works variations, payment disputes, delays and and defects crop up, they can be dealt with expediently by an experienced property development lawyer.
Property development lawyers also have a detailed knowledge of the legal requirements of subdivision and buying, selling and leasing property.
How construction lawyers specialise
Some general construction lawyers are able to provide legal assistance across most areas of construction law. Others specialise in particular industries or categories of construction work.
For example, construction lawyers who typically specialise in “front-end” advice will be involved at the start of any project when you are setting up the necessary contracts. Once the project is underway, any disputes arising during the build can be supported by a lawyer specialising in “back-end” construction advice.
Services offered by construction lawyers
If you are a contractor, supplier, developer or consultant, a construction lawyer can provide a range of up-front services. At the start of the contracting process, they can prepare tender rules, negotiate and advise on terms of letters of intent and/or appointment. They can give legal advice on third-party access deeds and other ancillary project documents. They will also draft out and review contractual arrangements, signposting the high risks and putting contract amendments in place.
A construction lawyer can also offer front-end advice to protect your interests in defining the obligations, as well as back-end support if you are faced with problems that could lead to a dispute.
Throughout a construction project, construction lawyers assist in drafting the associated paperwork from contracts to letters of acceptance and formal instruments.
Contact a construction lawyer today
All in all, construction lawyers are able to tailor their support to your needs, and this is where they can save you time and money to ensure you don’t make costly mistakes around the legalities in place in the construction sector.
At Nevett Ford, our experienced planning and construction lawyers within the property and conveyancing team are ready to provide advice and assistance on a wide range of construction matters. Contact us to discuss your requirements today.