Home Construction & Renovation Litigation

No matter how much you research your options before hiring a contractor to tackle a construction or remodeling project, there will be times when the work is substandard. If you cannot reach an agreement with the contractor, it is time to enlist the services of a knowledgeable construction law attorney who will fight for you.

Wright & Associates is uniquely qualified to protect your interests and advocate on your behalf. Wright & Associates' lawyers include licensed civil engineers with experience in construction management. That, combined with Wright & Associates's extensive knowledge of construction contracts, building codes, construction documents and insurance, allows Wright & Associates to accurately assess the merits of your case.

Representation In A Wide Array Of Construction Litigation

Wright & Associates represents individuals throughout Ohio on a full spectrum of residential and commercial construction law disputes, including:

  • Construction defect claims
  • Negligent construction
  • Water infiltration
  • Accidents
  • Construction delay claims

Wright & Associates has successfully resolved construction and contract litigation cases for clients in a wide range of disputes. A summary of Wright & Associates’ relevant cases in construction litigation and other practice areas can be found here.

The Firm's ability to build a strong case allows you to negotiate from a position of strength. If a fair agreement cannot be reached through negotiation, Wright & Associates is prepared to pursue litigation. The team's background, education, experience and meticulous attention to detail work well in the courtroom.

A Consultation Is The First Step To Resolving Your Dispute

If you are about to become embroiled in a legal dispute, the first step to resolving your issue is to contact an experienced litigator. Use the contact form on this website or call 614-715-4686 to make an appointment.

FAQ

Construction

General

Q: Do I have to use a licensed contractor on my construction project?

A: Licensing rules vary from place-to-place, but generally it is wise to only work with a licensed contractor. Construction done by a person not licensed as a contractor may not pass inspection.

Q: What is a mechanic's lien?

A: A mechanic's lien is a claim against a building or property to secure payment. The lien makes the property owner ultimately responsible for paying the contractor, subcontractor or materialman – regardless of whether the owner has already paid the prime contractor or direct contractor in full. A lien can result when the prime contractor has not paid subcontractors, laborers or suppliers. Legally, the property owner is ultimately responsible for payment — even if the owner has already paid the direct contractor.

Q: There is a lien on my property. Do I have to pay the lien?

A: It depends. There are several technical requirements for a lien to be valid. If there is a lien on your property, you should consult a lawyer to see if it is valid before paying.

Q: What happens if I do not pay a lien?

A: If the lien is valid, the lienholder may go to court to get an order enforcing the lien. A lien can lead to a foreclosure, forcing the sale of the property in lieu of compensation. Liens can also be problematic if you try to sell or refinance your home.

Q: Can a contractor bill me for more than the written estimate?

A: Generally, yes. An estimate is just a contractor's guess as to the price. But there are limits. If a contractor is charging you more than you think is fair, you should speak with a lawyer to evaluate whether you have a claim for fraud against the contractor.

Q: Is an oral construction contract legally valid?

A: Yes, if the technical requirements for a contract are met. Regardless of its validity, an oral contract is generally a bad idea. There are too many opportunities for misunderstandings. Both parties are better off with a clearly written document that sets out each party's rights and responsibilities.

Q: How can I find a good contractor?

A: Fifteen ways to find a good contractor:

  1. Hire a lawyer to negotiate and draft a binding contract.
  2. A good contractor will not try to rush a homeowner to start work immediately.
  3. Some bad contractors will inspect the property and claim work must start immediately.
  4. If a consumer is in need of a loan, a predatory contractor may insist a certain lender. Shop around for your own loan.
  5. Be aware of a contractor who seeks you out.
  6. Get several estimates and review them carefully to see if the same or different work will be done, and what quality of materials are to be used.
  7. Ask for references and call the references.
  8. Check with the Better Business Bureau for any complaints or comments.
  9. Do not pay anything more than a reasonable deposit upfront, and get a receipt.
  10. Do not agree to make final payment before being satisfied that the job has been done.
  11. Keep ten percent of the project price as retainage to be paid one to six months following completion of the project to ensure that there are no problems with the work.
  12. Be sure your contract states who is responsible for getting necessary work permits and who pays for them-and make sure they have been obtained.
  13. Inspect the job as it proceeds. If you are not comfortable inspecting the job, hire an architect to do so for you.
  14. If problems develop with the job get the help from a person with repair experience or with home or code inspection experience, such as an architect.
  15. Don't sign a contract containing blanks. If there are blanks, insert "N/A" (not applicable) or cross through any blanks.

Q: What questions should I ask before hiring a contractor?

A: Six questions you should ask before hiring a contractor:

  1. Under what circumstances can the price for the work be changed from the estimate?
  2. How soon will the work start?
  3. When will the work be completed?
  4. Is the contractor licensed, and by whom? Call and verify what you are told.
  5. Is the contractor insured?
  6. Are the workers covered by workers' compensation insurance?

Q: What documents should I get before I hire a contractor?

A: Five documents you should get before hiring a contractor:

  1. A written estimate
  2. A written contract
  3. A copy of the contractor’s license
  4. A copy of the contractor’s bond
  5. A copy of the contractor’s insurance declarations page

General

Q: How much is an initial consultation?

A: Generally, Wright & Associates does not charge for an initial consultation.

Q: Why should I hire Wright & Associates?

A: Wright & Associates:

  1. Ben has experience trying cases.
  2. Ben has experience arguing appeals.
  3. Ben and his team will protect your rights.
  4. Ben and his team will gather the necessary evidence.
  5. Ben and his team are professionals who are committed to your case.
  6. Ben and his team have the experience and resources to investigate your claim.
  7. Ben and his team will prevent you from giving statements against your interest.
  8. Ben and his team will come to you if you cannot come to us.
  9. If Ben does not think he can get you more money than you could without a lawyer, then he will not take your case.
  10. Ben and his team will put you on equal footing with the insurance company and their well-trained and experienced adjustors.
  11. Ben is a former insurance lawyer. Since he used to represent the insurance company, he understands how a insurance company may try to minimize your claim.

Q: Do you accept credit cards?

A: Yes.

Q: How much time do I have to file a lawsuit?

A: It depends on the claim you want to assert. While some statutes of limitations are set by law, other limitations are set by the terms of a contract. The bottom line: You should consult with a lawyer as soon as possible. Once the statute of limitations runs, you may be forever barred from recovering for your damages.