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Schinnerer’s new rectification coverage facilitates design-build leadership

As the market for the creation of capital assets moves increasingly toward design-build, many design firms have found themselves in the difficult position of being a subcontractor to a design-builder who often is a construction contractor. Serving their client—the design-build entity—and not the ultimate project client can create communication and ethical problems for the design … Continue reading

Engineers without water

The governor of California has ordered a 25% cut in water consumption after four years of drought to compel people to reduce water consumption. This has finally brought media attention to infrastructure challenges that, for the most part, don’t get much coverage from the mainstream media. The National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) Code of … Continue reading

Why are some words in your contracts capitalized and others aren’t’?

I recently received a telephone call from a policyholder asking this question because of a minor issue that arose when the term “notice of award” was capitalized in the general conditions, but was not capitalized in the instructions to bidders. His attorney advised that “it could be argued” (a not-unusual term for an attorney to … Continue reading

What is a “safe harbor” and does it really protect you?

A “safe harbor” provision establishes a contingency percentage for change order costs during construction. If written properly, it can be an effective risk management tool. We recently reviewed a professional services agreement that included the following provision: “It is understood that the nature of the design process is such that plans, specifications and other documentation … Continue reading