Be wary of underfunded clients

As the resurgent economy demands more housing, private infrastructure, and other capital assets, a design firm faces the increased possibility that a client might encounter financial troubles. In addition to carefully vetting your client to determine their ability to successfully fund a project, you should understand your legal positions if a client experiences cash-flow problems.... Continue Reading →

EJCDC releases four updated engineering contracts

Last week we posted about new contracts from the AIA. This week we're focusing on new contracts from EJCDC. Engineers should be aware that the Engineers Joint Contract Documents Committee (EJCDC) released four updated documents late in 2015. They are: E-560, Standard Form of Agreement Between Engineer and Land Surveyor E-564, Standard Form of Agreement... Continue Reading →

Should you waive your right to a jury trial?

Although few disputes between clients and professionals are resolved through litigation, many clients demand that the design professional contractually waive any future right to litigate before a jury. Clients often want to set up a dispute resolution process that ends with a bench trial—allowing a judge to both decide the facts and apply the law... Continue Reading →

New AIA design-build contracts released

As design-build keeps increasing market share in the project delivery process, more often than not architects and engineering firms are relegated to subcontractor status. Often, the contracts used reduce the amount of services provided by professionals, target professionals for all of the professional liability exposure (even though design-builders should carry professional liability insurance), and create... Continue Reading →

Understanding fiduciary obligations

While all contracts have a legal standard of trust, a fiduciary relationship is a higher legal level of trust because one party is vulnerable financially to the actions of the other party. A fiduciary obligation is not considered an “arms-length” transaction where each party is looking out for their own interests. Instead, a fiduciary is... Continue Reading →

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