4 Unexpected Legal Costs for Construction Companies

Besides the expenses that come with the everyday operation of any construction company, there’s always the lurking threat of litigation. Legal costs are one business variable that many ignore, often to their eventual detriment. Becoming more familiar with the legal costs you may be liable for in the future can help you to plan for them. The following unexpected legal costs can be a catastrophe for construction companies without protection.

Employee Injuries

No matter how many precautions you may take, any construction site is an inherently risky work environment. Employee injuries can make a serious dent in your bottom line if you don’t have adequate insurance coverage and legal representation. If you find yourself facing a lawsuit over alleged safety infractions, knowing how to find the right construction expert witness to back up your side of the story is of paramount importance.

Construction Defects

The field of construction defect litigation is rife with tales of costly lawsuits that have bankrupted companies. Clearly, the best way to avoid a messy legal action is to prevent construction defects from happening in the first place. Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to do so thanks to faulty materials and other outside factors beyond your control. Having a good lawyer on retainer as well as insurance is your best defense.

Billing Disputes

Most construction projects only proceed once a well-defined budget with a fair degree of leeway factored in is agreed upon. As most construction professionals know, things rarely go according to plan in the budgeting department. Municipal projects are often prone to cost overruns that can result in legal action. Acquainting yourself with qualified construction claims consultants is a smart idea if you’re interested in reducing the chance of a major legal disaster.

Environmental Claims

Most reputable construction companies are well-versed in the intricacies of local and federal environmental regulations. Despite their best efforts, even the most cautious construction outfits often run afoul of some obscure environmental law at one point or another. Once an environmental claim has been filed, things can get expensive quickly. Having an environmental law expert on speed dial is a prudent move that can spare you many headaches.

Reducing Legal Costs

If any of these hypothetical legal scenarios become a reality, private mediation is often the least expensive way to go. To avoid a worst-case scenario, robust commercial liability insurance coverage is a must. No one can predict the future no matter how careful they are, after all. As such, preparing for the aforementioned potential legal costs ahead of time is just common sense.


, a structural steel expert with over 40 years of experience.