Change Order Claims

Construction projects involve numerous people, supplies and stipulations in order to be successfully completed. While contracts outline the specific regulations and logistics of a given construction projects, there are often necessary changes that must be made for a project to be designed and built effectively. These are known as change order claims and a Gainesville construction lawyer can help you understand how they operate and how they differ from other contract provisions.

What Is A Change Order?

As its name implies, a change order is a request for a change to be made to a construction project. The change request may be in regards to the time of completion of a construction project, a change in duties and/or compensation of workers, or a change in the overall design of the construction project. In most cases, a change order becomes necessary when an unforeseen circumstance occurs and interrupts the project’s original plan.

Change Orders & Change Claims

Construction lawyers are vital to changes being made to construction projects. The process often becomes long and complicated, so construction attorneys are necessary to ensure that the change order actually goes through. With construction projects, change orders and change claims are often utilized together. The reason for this is that the two often depend on each other.

A change order, which is essentially a change request, cannot be enforced without the submission of a change claim. Most contracts contain provisions that govern how unanticipated events should be handled with detailed instructions and rigid timelines. A claim, similar to  insurance, forces owners to be accountable and to compensate workers when necessary. Claims allow workers to receive or obtain what is already provided within the established contract. Meanwhile, change orders are new requests that do not already exist within the contract. In order for a change order to be made, a change claim often has to be completed. Because of strict time constraints, if the claim is not submitted within the contract’s designated timeframe, the change order cannot be completed. Understanding change orders and change claims can be difficult, but it does not have to be. With the assistance of a construction lawyer in Gainesville, FL, you can trust that you will learn everything you need to know to make your change order become a reality.

Guidelines for Contractors

The truth is, changes in construction projects are common. It is simply impossible to predict every type of unforeseen circumstance and measure its effect on a given project. When poor weather conditions disrupt the working schedule, or when an initial design appears infeasible for a particular space, or when additional supplies and/or workers are needed, change order claims become necessary. The best thing about change order claims is that they do not require an establishment of a new contract. This makes the process of amendment and the completion of the overall project easier and quicker.

If you are a contractor seeking to modify a construction project, there are a few guidelines that you should follow. A Gainesville attorney can help to protect you during change order claims.

Be knowledgeable.

The most important trait that you have as a contractor is your knowledge. You have experience and skills within the construction field that makes you an expert in your field. As such, employ your knowledge and use your best overall judgement. If you foresee issues in a construction project, do not be afraid to bring those problems to light and to request changes, as they may prevent catastrophic failures and/or complex claims in the long run.

Understand your unique geographic space.

We are not suggesting that you should know everything there is to know about world geography, but it it helpful to know the basics about the area in which a construction project will be built. Weather conditions, diverse creatures and regional events often affect how a construction project is built and the amount of time that it will take. Be sure to study these factors and consider them when filing change order claims.

Read and follow the contract.

Read and reread your contract. If you have trouble understanding legal jargon and/or large percentiles, do not hesitate to contact any of the Gainesville construction law firms. Contracts not only govern how a project will be completed, but they dictate when and how a change of a project will be enforced. Therefore, it is important to understand the time constraints and what factors constitute a need for a change order claim.

Contact an attorney.

After filing a change order claim, you should contact an experienced construction attorney. Have the attorney review your contract and provide pointers on how to move forward and ensure that your claim is successful.

Gainesville Construction Attorneys

At Warner, Sechrest & Butts, our experienced construction litigators pride ourselves in our many years of expertise in law, the construction field and business practices. As such, we are able to guide and advise contractors before, during and after the change order claim process. If you need assistance with a change order claim, do not hesitate to contact our Gainesville construction law firm.