The process of taking a construction project from plans and funding to bricks and mortar can be complicated. There are many professionals involved in this process from lenders to architects to general contractors and subcontractors. Unfortunately, with so many people involved, regulations to follow and approvals to seek, it’s not uncommon for conflict to arise. When they do, it’s important to have a Fort Lauderdale construction dispute attorney on your side to protect your interest.
Working with a Fort Lauderdale Construction Dispute Lawyer
Construction conflicts are typically resolved in three ways: litigation, arbitration, and mediation. Each process is distinct and can be handled with the help of a Fort Lauderdale construction dispute lawyer.
Litigation is a primary option if one party feels that the other party has breached an agreement between the two in some way. Litigation can also be used if one or both parties cannot come to an agreement on a specific issue or if they refuse mediation or arbitration. Pro: Certain matters may not be able to be resolved through negotiation. A legally binding decision may be needed to settle some disputes. Con: Litigation can be expensive, lengthy, and typically damages business relationships.
Arbitration is a form of alternative dispute resolution in which a third party (individual or panel) is hired to hear arguments between disputing parties and make a decision. Both parties agree prior to the proceeding that the decision made by the arbitrator is legally binding. Pro: Allows a third party, typically an experienced member of the construction industry, to settle a dispute without having to go to court. Arbitration is typically more cost and time-effective than litigation, yet yields a definitive decision. Con: Disputes involving specific legal matters may be more suited for litigation than arbitration.
In mediation, both parties meet with a mediator to discuss their differences. The mediator then makes recommendations on how their conflict should be best resolved. Both parties may sign a memorandum of understanding, which is a legally binding document that holds both parties accountable for the agreed upon solution to their dispute. Pros: Mediation puts the solution to a dispute in the hands of the parties involved. This is important because they have the best understanding of the details of the dispute and the most to lose by it not being resolved. Cons: If one party is unwilling to yield from their position on a specific issue, a third party may be needed to settle the conflict.
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Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.