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Construction Law: Owners and Developers

Construction Law: Owners and Developers

Contact: Neale T. Johnson

Smith Moore Leatherwood provides a full range of construction-related legal services, including negotiating contracts at the start of a project, advising clients and resolving construction issues collaboratively during the project, and defending and prosecuting claims and disputes after project completion.  Our hard hat lawyers leverage extensive litigation and arbitration experience to advance three broad service goals:

  • Risk Avoidance – We help owners avoid construction claims risk by negotiating and documenting more favorable contract terms before projects start.  Owners need construction counsel before selecting designers and contractors when the owner’s leverage is greatest.  Industry standard form contracts protect (1) industry participants represented by the trade organization that sells the form, and (2) industry participants that buy licenses to the form.  Owners should not expect designers or contractors to negotiate against their own interests; our competent construction lawyers help owners level the field and achieve more favorable contracts.
  • Risk Mitigation – We help owners minimize the impact of construction claims by advising them at the first sign of trouble.  Our hard hat lawyers prosecute and defend construction claims regularly, and that experience helps them advise owners early, when they can still reduce the cost or time impact of an issue on a project.  Our lawyers help owners minimize disagreements and preserve business relationships through early intervention and collaborative conflict resolution techniques.
  • Risk Resolution – When risk avoidance and mitigation fail, our hard hat lawyers aggressively prosecute and defend claims in court and arbitration.  We use early case assessment to look for prompt, fair business resolutions and, when that fails, vigorously prosecute owners’ claims and defenses in court or arbitration.

Smith Moore Leatherwood’s hard hat lawyers deliver construction-related legal services to owners and developers efficiently and at a fair, predictable price.  We accomplish this using our proprietary legal project management system and a client-centered, value-based pricing structure that empowers clients to control the scope of legal services and improves the predictability of invoicing and timing of payments.



Partner, Municipalities, Counties & Special Purpose Entities Leader
(336) 378-5321
(864) 751-7655
(919) 755-8778
(336) 378-5540
Partner, Construction Industry Leader
(704) 384-2653
Partner in Charge
(404) 962-1036
(910) 815-7135
(404) 962-1077

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