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Orange County Business & Commercial Law Blog

What if your house gets built on the wrong lot?

Experts warn that it is often difficult for people who do not have training and experience to read lot lines and understand property boundaries. You may have a general sense of where your property ends, but do you know exactly what it stops and the next lot begins? A lot of people do not, so they hire professionals before buying homes or having them built.

But what happens when the professionals make mistakes? What if they build your home on the wrong lot? It happens, and California residents need to be aware of the problems it can cause.

Methods for resolving construction disputes

Construction disputes are very common in California. With so much construction occurring throughout the state, there are bound to be issues between the parties on the contract. Whether it's residential or commercial construction, all those involved need to know how to resolve construction disputes. Here are some of the best ways to resolve construction disputes in Orange County.

A common method to resolving construction disputes is to have a hearing in front of a dispute resolution board. The boards are comprised of retired construction professionals who hear the dispute and then render a decision that must be followed based on language in the contract.

How to determine liquidated damages over construction delays

What happens when your construction project doesn't go according to contract? You know that you're losing money every day that the project is delayed.

Quite often, the liquidated damages provision in your contract can move at least some of your losses to the builder or contractor involved in the delay. These are the damages you can charge against the money you still owe the contractor once the project is finished. They're usually represented in your construction contract as a daily charge. Each day that the project stays incomplete after its projected finish is a day you can deduct.

What should you ask when choosing a business partner?

Picking the right business partner is as important to the success of your company as anything else you'll do during the business planning stage. You need someone who will work with you, help to advance and redefine your vision and make the company stronger than you could make it alone.

Remember, this is more than a friendship or a even a partnership. The two of you should have a legal contract defining roles, rights, compensation and much more. Once you pick someone, you'll be working together closely for months, years or decades to come.

4 reasons for construction contract disputes

Construction contract disputes may arise for all manner of reasons, depending on the specifics of the job itself and the unique contract being used. However, tracking some of the most common reasons helps both contractors and clients understand how these disputes often begin, what can be done to prevent them and what legal options exist when a dispute is unavoidable.

Here are four main reasons for disputes:

  1. There are significant delays. The contractor says the house will be done by June 1. It's still not finished on July 1. Delays could be due to issues with materials and the supply chain, which may be out of the contractor's hands, but clients are still angry that the contract was not fully honored as written.
  2. One side did not understand the contract. Assumptions and miscommunication lead to a lot of avoidable disputes. For instance, perhaps June 1 was not a hard deadline, even though the client believed that it was.
  3. One party is making unsubstantiated claims. This could be done willfully or accidentally, but it can lead to a dispute even when the contract was actually followed correctly.
  4. The contract was not administered properly. In the most extreme cases, this means the job was never done at all.

Business owners fight over easement and property lines

Although people think about property issues as a residential problem, they also impact commercial properties. Property line disputes aren't always pretty during construction projects, as one gas station owner recently found out.

The station owner said that he had an easement on the property adjacent to his, claiming it had been used for around 60 years. Now, a Starbucks is going in on that property, and the owner of the coffee shop does not think that there is an easement.

What are the advantages of forming a limited liability company?

Whether you already operate a business or are planning to start one, you will want to read on in this post. Today, we will take a look at the limited liability company (LLC) and the advantages it brings to businesses. The most important thing you need to know about an LLC is that it combines features from corporations and partnerships built into a hybrid. LLC laws are governed in each individual state but recognized in all of them.

One of the ways that an LLC resembles a corporation is that it has limited liability. When a business registers as an LLC, it protects the owners from liability and business debt. This means that if the business compiles debt, that debt cannot be repaid by creditors going after the personal assets of the company's owner. Instead, any lawsuits asking for repayment of debt will target the business itself.

Explaining the duties of the construction manager

Construction managers are an important part of the construction industry. They are responsible for a host of different things, including ensuring that all of the workers on the site are donning the proper safety gear and following all Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements. Today, we will take a look at the responsibilities of the construction manager on construction sites throughout Orange County.

The construction manager is the person responsible for creating project estimates, setting project budgets, putting together a timetable for completion and building the strategy for construction. The construction manager will also pick the subcontractors working on the project and will help coordinate meetings between the team and architects, engineers and other specialists.

Important steps for strong contract management

When a company does not manage its contracts appropriately, it can experience a host of different problems. These problems can include the loss of clients and the loss of sales. Contract management is not a difficult concept. You just need to ensure that the right person is in charge of managing the contracts your company signs so the proper oversight is provided.

All companies should have a contract management plan in place. The plan needs to be comprehensive and set forth a system for managing the contracts your company signs and uses to operate on a daily basis. The plan also needs to cover how each department will manage its own contracts, report issues and work with the contract management team.

Tree removal near Palm Springs golf course causing issues

The plans to remove a swath of trees on one side of a Palm Springs golf course have some residents who live near the course up in arms. When the plan was originally announced by officials from the town to remove trees along the 14th fairway at the Tahquitz Creek Golf Course, many who live in the neighborhood were pleased. One group of concerned residents are now speaking out against the plan.

Residents of a neighborhood across from the fairway are arguing against removing the trees, which are tamarisk, because they have enjoyed the view for the past handful of decades. The city believes that the project will cost roughly $170,000 to complete. Concerned residents are worried that dogs and children will run across the tract to the other neighborhood if the trees are removed. They are also worried about their property values decreasing.

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