ILLINOIS MECHANICS LIENS / COVID-19

Project Delivery Methods for Design and Construction: More Than You Ever Wanted to Know

This post is about “designing” the web of contracts for design and construction projects. That web is called a “project delivery method,” and there are many ways to engineer that web of contracts. The article is not about claims or disputes. Not overtly, at least. It does, however, have a decided “dispute resolution” overtone because good project delivery methods and contracts can minimize disputes. Good Project Read More

Construction Contracts Primer: What Real Estate Attorneys Should Know

On December 10, 2020, Jeremy will present “Construction Contracts Primer: What Real Estate Attorneys Should Know” to The Chicago Bar Association’s Real Property Law Committee.  This presentation focuses on the importance of giving thoughtful consideration to the project delivery method, their insurance ramifications, and construction pricing issues, all before selecting the type of design or construction contract.  Read More

Courts Often Favor Arbitration Over Litigation

The choice between arbitration and court litigation complicated. Arbitration is no panacea. Some disputes are definitely better suited to litigation in a court of competent jurisdiction than arbitration. However, Illinois courts and law are no longer hostile to arbitration, and recognize its many advantages. Illinois law and Illinois Courts Favor Arbitration. Our Supreme Court has characterized arbitration as “an Read More

Advantages of Private Arbitration Over Public Court Litigation

Private arbitration has several advantages over litigation in a court of law. One is that arbitration takes place mostly in private. Unlike litigation, which is conducted in public and leaves behind publicly-available records, arbitration typically does not leave behind a public record of filings which could embarrass the parties involved in the dispute. Arbitrators Know Design and Construction Arbitration enables Read More

How Guided Choice Mediation Achieves Earlier Settlements of Design and Construction Disputes

A version of this article first appeared in the Construction Law Newsletter, Volume 34, Number 3 (January 2018), coauthors Paul M. Lurie and Jeremy S. Baker Want to Resolve Design and Construction Disputes Quickly? Clients have spoken, and their in-house counsel, lawyers, and mediators now understand that clients want their disputes resolved quickly — faster than they typically are in traditional mediation and Read More

Fixed Fee v. Cost-Plus GMP: Which is Best?

There are good reasons for real estate developers and project owners to prefer a “Fixed Fee” approach over a “Cost-Plus-Fee-up-to-Guaranteed-Maximum-Price (GMP)” approach to paying for construction work. But Cost-Plus GMP Contract Agreements have many virtues as well. Which is best? There is no one correct answer. Much depends on the project-specific goals. What does the developer or project owner most highly value? Read More

Jeremy Baker inducted into the prestigious Society of Illinois Construction Attorneys

Admission to the Society of Illinois Construction Attorneys (SOICA) is by invitation only. Its ranks include distinguished former judges, highly regarded mediators and arbitrators, and attorneys who are widely considered to be at the top of the Illinois construction law bar.  “Joining SOICA has been an important goal of mine for 15 years,” says Jeremy. He is “excited to continue to work with the SOICA members – the Read More

The Hidden Benefit to Thoughtful Contract Negotiations

The very act of two project participants coming together to thoughtfully negotiate a design and construction contract has a benefit unto itself – one that is separate from the piece of paper produced at the end of the contract negotiation. Why Are Good Contracts Important for Design and Construction Projects? Speed and Efficiency When I negotiate contracts, my goal is to complete the negotiation quickly and Read More

Accessible Design Requirements: Worthy Aims, Huge Risks for Design Professionals

Design professionals must comply with a variety of federal, state, and local statutes, rules, and codes that require certain public and commercial buildings to be designed in a manner so they are readily accessible to, and usable by, persons with certain kinds of disabilities. Accessibility Requirements Such “accessibility requirements” address things like ensuring persons in wheelchairs have accessible routes into Read More

Jeremy Baker to Present Seminar “Using Mechanics Liens to Get Paid in the COVID-19 Era” Friday, September 25th

Mechanics liens are a powerful tool to help secure payment on Illinois projects. In turbulent economic times, liens can be particularly useful to architects, engineers, and contractors concerned about their clients’ willingness – or ability – to pay for design and construction services. Liens can sometimes motivate project owners and lenders to pay for design and construction services. Claimants who meet certain Read More