In humanity’s never ending quest for perfection, being close to perfect is still failure. If you grew up playing sports you undoubtedly heard a grizzled coach disgustedly say, “[c]lose only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades and atomic warfare.” However, under the Doctrine of Substantial Performance (and the related “Economic Waste” theory), construction projects may be
On April 23, 2019, by a vote of 94-0, House Bill 273, which is an overall update and revision to Louisiana’s Contractor’s Licensing Law, passed out of the Louisiana House of Representatives. The reengrossed version of the bill, including amendments made in the House Committee on Commerce and those made on the House Floor is…
The United States District Court for the Western District of Louisiana recently relied on Louisiana Revised Statutes 9:2779 in holding unenforceable a mandatory forum selection clause in a construction contract. Pittsburg Tank & Tower Maintenance Co., Inc. (“Pittsburg”) contracted with the Town of Jonesboro (the “Town”) to perform maintenance and repair work on an…
Conventional wisdom holds that arbitration is a more preferable mechanism for dispute resolution than full-blown litigation in the court system. Knowing nothing else about the particulars of a particular dispute, if arbitration is available as an alternative to state or federal litigation, we generally advise our clients to arbitrate.…
Parties involved in the construction industry have long been familiar with mandatory arbitration as a dispute resolution procedure.
Originally arbitration was said to be more efficient and less expensive than litigation. Over time, experience has shown that arbitration is not necessarily more efficient or more timely.
Regardless of its potential benefits, one fact remains absolute…
Recently, we have noticed an increase in the number of construction contracts that either identify (1) an incorrect entity or (2) a non-existent entity as a party to the contract. No big deal, right…..maybe not.
It should be easy enough for the persons signing the contract to confirm their respective names. It is not as…
On February 12, 2014, President Obama followed up on comments made during his State of the Union address and signed an Executive Order increasing the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors. The Order, which increases the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour, covers all employees who perform services…
All persons associated with non-public construction projects in Louisiana are affected by, and should be familiar with, the Louisiana Private Works Act. La. R.S. 9:4801, et. seq. (“PWA”). The two fundamental policies behind the implementation of the PWA summarized are:
- To protect those who contribute to the improvement of immovable property by ensuring that the owner does not benefit from their labor without compensating them; and
- To incentivize the owner to take reasonable steps to ensure that contractors and suppliers are paid.
The PWA was first enacted in 1981 and was based upon the work and recommendations of the official advisory law revision commission and, the law reform agency and legal research agency of the State of Louisiana – The Louisiana Law Institute. Over the last thirty years, numerous amendments and revisions to the PWA have resulted in piece-meal changes to certain provisions that lead to confusion, ambiguity, and potential traps for the unwary.
Recognizing the undesirable effects of the many revisions, the 2012 Louisiana Legislature has once again turned to the Louisiana Law Institute for its recommendations to simplify and better organize the provisions of the PWA.
Background of Louisiana Revised Statute 9:4815
Louisiana has a unique statute in its Private Works Act which requires owners to deposit retainage funds in an interest bearing escrow account for construction contracts over $50,000. While a number of other states have statutory provisions as to how much retainage may be withheld under a construction contract, Louisiana’s statute, which does not regulate those substantive terms, instead dictates how those funds are handled during the course of the project.
The statute, found at Louisiana Revised Statute 9:4815, was added to the Private Works Act by Act 638 of 2010. While the bill as originally introduced applied to all funds withheld from periodic payments by an Owner, the final version of the Act applies only to “retainage.”
Almost everyone knows insurance policies provide a defense and indemnity for insureds, if the terms and conditions of the insurance policy are met. Insureds include named insureds, other insureds (as defined by the policy) or additional insureds as provided by endorsement. However, insurance policies may also provide payment and defense to others who are not insureds under the policies.
Most liability policies provide coverage to the insureds for liability when the insureds have contractually agreed to provide indemnity and/or defense to or party to a contract. A typical example of contractual indemnity coverage can be found in a construction contract to supply labor and materials related to electrical wiring in the construction of a home, office, pipeline or oil rig.