Author Archives: Karl Oles

Effective dialogue with an attorney can accomplish much

The interaction between business people and lawyers can be productive or frustrating, depending on whether there is good communication and a shared understanding. Consider this conversation between a business manager (Murphy) and a lawyer (Landry): Murphy: We are developing a ...

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In construction, expect the best and prepare for the worst (access required)

When drafting a construction or design contract, it is easy to be carried away by enthusiasm: “This is going to be an exciting project, and we are all going to make money!” It is tempting to fill the contract with ...

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An introduction to design-build for public project delivery (access required)

The traditionally widespread requirement that public owners use only the “design-bid-build” method for project delivery has been relaxed. Instead of preparing a design and then selecting a low-bid contractor, certain public owners in Idaho, Washington and Oregon (and elsewhere) have ...

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Don’t start work until a contract is in place

After moving to my current law firm several years ago, one of my first assignments was to review a client’s high-rise building project. Although excavation had been completed and work was beginning on the underground garage levels, no contract had ...

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Doing something about the weather

It is a general principle, going back at least to United States v. Spearin (1918), that “where one agrees to do, for a fixed sum, a thing possible to be performed, he will not be excused or become entitled to ...

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Modern construction and design contract forms

Standard construction and design contract forms have been developed over the years by industry groups that have studied both what works legally and what works in practice. Use of standard forms can save money and they are backed by study ...

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