Construction law also governs disputes between the parties involved in the construction process (i.e. builder and homeowner). There are many laws that govern the construction process, and that apply to the various businesses and professions that are a part of and serve the construction industry.
Government contract law is a specific area of construction law. These projects involve the Federal, State and Local Governments, and are governed by very precise government laws, legal principles and legal procedures.
When injuries occur, workers’ compensation law is also a subset of construction law.
In construction law, both the owner and the contractor are required by law to act in good faith in the performance of their contractual obligations. Courts have held that the construction contractor owes the owner a duty to perform services in an appropriate workmanlike manner. This duty requires the contractor to warn the owner if the design or construction specifications may have damaging results. Likewise, courts have held than an owner has a duty to cooperate with contractors. The owner’s duty to cooperate also requires that the owner not interfere with or purposefully delay the contractor’s performance.
Although specialized, construction law can touch on many legal practice areas. If you have issues with your contractor, you might want to speak with an attorney who has expertise in this complex field. Visit Us at Google+ Copyright HG.org
Construction Law - US
- ABA - Forum on the Construction Industry
The American Bar Association’s Forum on the Construction Industry is the largest organization of construction lawyers in the United States and abroad. Its 6,000 members are drawn from all areas of practice: large law firms, small firms, solo practitioners, government lawyers and corporate in house counsel.
- American National Standards Institute (ANSI)
The Institute oversees the creation, promulgation and use of thousands of norms and guidelines that directly impact businesses in nearly every sector: from acoustical devices to construction equipment, from dairy and livestock production to energy distribution, and many more. ANSI is also actively engaged in accrediting programs that assess conformance to standards – including globally-recognized cross-sector programs such as the ISO 9000 (quality) and ISO 14000 (environmental) management systems.
- B4UBUILD - Residential Building Codes, Construction Standards, Building Permit Information
B4UBUILD.COM has been designed for use by anyone involved with residential construction. First time home buyers will find homebuilding books, a sample construction schedule, information about construction contracts, and a complete overview of the home building process. Move up buyers might find a new idea or a different house style in our photo album. Custom home builders will find a large directory of links to other home building resources and trade associations, as well as, a list of some of our pet peeves, which just might help them avoid conflicts with their clients.
- Building Seismic Safety Council
The Building Seismic Safety Council (BSSC), established by the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS), develops and promotes building earthquake risk mitigation regulatory provisions for the nation.
- Construction Specifications Institute
CSI was founded in March 1948 by the specification writers of government agencies who came together to improve the quality of construction specifications. The Institute’s efforts were essential in improving construction specification quality so that it could meet the demands of the post-war construction boom. Development of specifications best practices, promulgating standards/formats, professional education, and certification were cornerstones of the Institute.
- Deceptive Home Improvement Contractors Complaints
HUD insures loans to help people renovate and repair their homes through a program called Title 1. Some deceptive contractors in the program were performing shoddy work, falsifying documents, and overcharging homeowners. This fraud had victimized thousands of families and cost the taxpayers millions of dollars. To avoid becoming a victim of fraud, work only with a HUD-approved Title 1 lender. This allows you to select the contractor and helps to prevent inflated estimates that only increase costs.
- Energy Efficiency and Sustainable Design Standards for New Federal Buildings
Provides full text of Department of Energy, Federal Energy Management Program’s energy conversation regulations. Regulations cover new federal commercial and residential buildings, both high-rise and low-rise; energy efficient products; motors; standby energy products.
- EPA - Construction Section
The construction sector comprises establishments primarily engaged in the construction of buildings and other structures, heavy construction (except buildings), additions and maintenance and repairs. Establishments engaged in demolition or wrecking of buildings and other structures and sale of materials from demolished structures are also included. This sector also includes those establishments engaged in blasting, test drilling, landfill, leveling, earthmoving and land drainage. The Department of Commerce formerly classified this industry under the 1987 Standard Industrial Classification code 15, 16, & 17; the sector is now classified under the 1997 North American Industry Classification System as 23.
- HUD - Fair Housing Act - Design Manual
First published in 1996, the Fair Housing Act Design Manual: A Manual to Assist Designers and Builders in Meeting the Accessibility Requirements of The Fair Housing Act provides clear and helpful guidance about ways to design and construct housing which complies with the Fair Housing Act. The manual explains the accessibility requirements of the Act, which must be incorporated into the design and construction of multifamily housing covered by the Act.
- HUD - Manufactured Housing Regulatory Background
The Manufactured Housing program is a national program established to protect the health and safety of the owners of manufactured (mobile) homes. Under the program HUD issues, monitors, and enforces Federal manufactured home construction and safety standards. The intent of the program is to: reduce personal injuries, deaths, property damage, insurance costs, and to improve the quality and durability of manufactured homes.
- Implementation of PL 102-522 for Fire Alarm and Automatic Sprinkler Installations
This guide provides both general and detailed information for Housing and Urban Development (HUD) field personnel regarding implementation of Public Law 102-522 pertaining to installation of fire alarm and automatic sprinkler systems.
- National Electrical Code (NEC)
The National Electrical Code (NEC), or NFPA 70, is a United States standard for the safe installation of electrical wiring and equipment. It is part of the National Fire Codes series published by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). While the NEC is not itself a U.S. law, NEC use is commonly mandated by state or local law, as well as in many jurisdictions outside of the United States. The NEC codifies the requirements for safe electrical installations into a single, standardized source.
- National Fire Protection Association - Codes and Standards
NFPA develops, publishes, and disseminates more than 300 consensus codes and standards intended to minimize the possibility and effects of fire and other risks. Virtually every building, process, service, design, and installation in society today is affected by NFPA documents.
- National Standard Plumbing Code (NSPC)
In 1971, the PHCC-National Association published the National Standard Plumbing Code (NSPC) in order to provide local and state governments, code administrative bodies and industry with a modern code, designed to ensure the proper installation of plumbing sustems. It has been maintained on a yearly basis, following the proven basic principles necessary to protect public health and safety.
- National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA)
In recent years, Congress has responded to a growing need to strengthen OMB Circular A-119 and has passed several laws making it clear that federal agencies rely upon private voluntary standards whenever feasible. Foremost among these laws is the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (Public Law 104-113). Signed into law in early 1996, this landmark legislation contains key provisions pertaining to standards and conformity assessment.
- Residential Fire Safety Institute (RFSI)
The Residential Fire Safety Institute (RFSI) is a public interest group created in 1982 to promote fire-safe homes through built-in fire protection and fire safety education. The U.S. has one of the worst records for residential fire deaths in the industrialized world. Residential fires account for 80 percent of all fire deaths. Our mission is to improve that dubious record. Originally known as Operation Life Safety, our name changed to the Residential Fire Safety Institute in June, 1999.
- Standards Development Organization Advancement Act of 2004
HR 1086 provides qualified standards developers with an opportunity to file for, and obtain, a limited exclusion from antitrust liability for treble damages. This protection is identical to the protection which has been available to joint venturers under the National Cooperative Research and Production Act since 1993, which also remains available to those utilizing a consortium, or other informal process to develop standards.
State Construction Laws and Building Codes
Organizations Related to Construction Law
- Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI)
The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) is the trade association representing manufacturers of air conditioning, heating and commercial refrigeration equipment. AHRI’s 300+ member companies account for more than 90 percent of the residential and commercial air conditioning, space heating, water heating, and commercial refrigeration equipment manufactured and sold in North America.
- Alliance for Fire and Smoke Containment and Control
The Alliance for Fire and Smoke Containment and Control was established in 1999 by building enforcement, construction, design, and manufacturing professionals in response to the need for a well-coordinated, educational effort to promote the value of a balanced fire protection design in the built environment.
- American Concrete Institute
Founded in 1904 and headquartered in Farmington Hills, MI, USA, the American Concrete Institute is advancing concrete knowledge by conducting seminars, managing certification programs, and publishing technical documents. The American Concrete Institute currently has 98 chapters and 20,000 members spanning 108 countries.
- American Fire Sprinkler Association, (AFSA)
The American Fire Sprinkler Association, (AFSA) is a non-profit, international association representing open shop fire sprinkler contractors, dedicated to the educational advancement of its members and promotion of the use of automatic fire sprinkler systems. AFSA was organized in 1981 to provide the open shop fire sprinkler contractor with training, consulting, communication, representation and many more services, all of which have expanded over its existence.
- American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC)
The American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC), headquartered in Chicago, is a not-for-profit technical institute and trade association established in 1921 to serve the structural steel design community and construction industry in the United States. AISC’s mission is to make structural steel the material of choice by being the leader in structural-steel-related technical and market-building activities, including: specification and code development, research, education, technical assistance, quality certification, standardization, and market development. AISC has a long tradition of service to the steel construction industry providing timely and reliable information.
- American Institute of Timber Construction (AITC)
The American Institute of Timber Construction (AITC) is the national technical trade association of the structural glued laminated (glulam) timber industry. AITC represents a majority of the glued laminated timber manufacturers in the U.S. in addition to a number of installers, suppliers, sales representatives, engineers, architects, designers, and researchers.
- American Society of Civil Engineers
Today ASCE is a worldwide leader for excellence in civil engineering. With a mission to advance professional knowledge and improve the practice of civil engineering, ASCE is a focal point for the development and transfer of research results, and technical policy and managerial information. Through strategic emphasis in key areas, including infrastructure renewal and development, policy leadership and professional development, ASCE delivers the highest quality publications, programs and services to its worldwide membership, demonstrating a daily commitment to sustaining the profession.
- American Society of Professional Estimators
The American Society of Professional Estimators serves construction estimators by providing education, fellowship, and opportunity for professional development. Education, Ethics, Standards, Certification, Fellowship… these lead to the ultimate goal Professionalism. We think you’ll agree... If all estimators were more professional, budget and other problems of the construction industry would be greatly reduced.
- American Subcontractors Association
The American Subcontractors Association is recognized as the united voice dedicated to improving the business environment in the construction industry.
- Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC)
Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) is a national association with 77 chapters representing 25,000 merit shop construction and construction-related firms with two million employees. ABC's membership represents all specialties within the U.S. construction industry and is comprised primarily of firms that perform work in the industrial and commercial sectors of the industry.
- Associated General Contractors of America (AGC)
Located in the Metropolitan Washington, DC area, The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) is the leading association for the construction industry. Operating in partnership with its nationwide network of Chapters, AGC provides a full range of services satisfying the needs and concerns of its members, thereby improving the quality of construction and protecting the public interest.
- Big Builder Online
BIG BUILDER Online is the authoritative source for market intelligence about companies at the forefront of the U.S. home building industry. The Web site features articles from BIG BUILDER magazine and more than 2,700 additional news sources, building product information, services directories, and advice from fellow building professionals.
- Building Codes Assistance Project (BCAP)
The Building Codes Assistance Project (BCAP) is a joint initiative of the Alliance to Save Energy, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. Since 1994, BCAP's goal has been to reduce building energy use by promoting the adoption, implementation, and advancement of energy-efficient building codes and standards on the state and local levels and internationally.
- Building Commissioning Association
The BCA's goal is to achieve high professional standards, while allowing for the diverse and creative approaches to building commissioning that benefit our profession and its clients. For this reason, the BCA focuses on identifying critical commissioning attributes and elements, rather than attempting to dictate a rigid commissioning process.
- Cedar Shake and Shingle Bureau
The Cedar Shake and Shingle Bureau is a non-profit organization that promotes the use of Certi-label™ cedar roofing and sidewall products. On June 9, 1915, at a meeting of the Trustees of the West Coast Lumber Manufacturers Association, it was agreed to establish a branch of the association to serve those members who manufactured shingles.
- Cellulose Insulation Manufacturers Association
Insulating your home or commercial building saves energy (which saves you money), keeps you warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer, and is one of the best things you can do to protect the environment. But which insulation should you choose? This site is designed to assist you in researching the performance and environmental impact of the insulation choices available to you.
- Construction Financial Management Association (CFMA)
The Construction Financial Management Association (CFMA) is “The Source & Resource for Construction Financial Professionals” and the only nonprofit organization dedicated to serving the construction financial professional. Established in 1981, CFMA’s General Members represent all types of contractors – including generals and subs – as well as developers, construction managers, architects, engineers, principals, and material and equipment suppliers. Associate Members include the accounting, insurance, surety, software, legal, and banking specialists who serve the construction industry.
- Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)
DSIRE is a comprehensive source of information on state, local, utility and federal incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency. Established in 1995 and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, DSIRE is an ongoing project of the N.C. Solar Center and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council.
- Energy and Environmental Building Alliance
The Energy & Environmental Building Alliance (EEBA) provides an invaluable platform for insight, collaboration and education. EEBA delivers unique and relevant, multi-platform educational resources with the intention to manifest sustainable and responsible building principles in the design, marketing and execution of the building process.
- Engineered Wood Association
For over seventy years, APA-The Engineered Wood Association has focused on helping the industry create structural wood products of exceptional strength, versatility and reliability. Combining the research efforts of scientists at APA’s 42,000 square-foot research center with the knowledge gained from decades of field work, and cooperation with our member manufacturers, APA promotes new solutions and improved processes that benefit the entire industry.
- Gypsum Association
The mission of the Gypsum Association, a not-for-profit trade association founded in 1930, is to promote the use of gypsum while advancing the development growth, and general welfare of the gypsum industry in the United States and Canada on behalf of its member companies.
- Institute for Business and Home Safety
The Institute for Business & Home Safety’s mission is to reduce the social and economic effects of natural disasters and other property losses by conducting research and advocating improved construction, maintenance and preparation practices.
- Insulation Contractors Association of America
Established in 1977, ICAA is the only national organization promoting professionalism in the residential and commercial insulation contracting industry.
- Modular Building Institute
The Modular Building Institute is the trade association representing companies involved in the manufacturing and distribution of commercial factory-built structures. MBI provides services and promotes professionalism through communication, education, and recognition. Dedicated to enhancing the future growth of the industry, MBI encourages innovation and quality among its members.
- National Association of Home Builders
Construction Codes and Standards links to resources on codes, standards, accessibility, energy efficiency, green building, fire protection, indoor environment issues.
- National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER)
The National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) is a not-for-profit education foundation created to develop industry-driven standardized craft training programs with portable credentials and help address the critical workforce shortage facing the construction industry.
- National Conference of States on Building Codes and Standards
NCSBCS serves as a forum for the interchange of information and provides technical services, education and training to our members to enhance the public’s social, economic well-being through safe, durable, accessible and efficient buildings.
- US Green Building Council
The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. USGBC works toward its mission of market transformation through its LEED green building certification program, robust educational offerings, a nationwide network of chapters and affiliates, the annual Greenbuild International Conference & Expo, and advocacy in support of public policy that encourages and enables green buildings and communities.
- Whole Building Design
The goal of 'Whole Building' Design is to create a successful high-performance building by applying an integrated design and team approach to the project during the planning and programming phases.
Publications Related to Construction Law
- Construction Criteria Base (CCB)
Construction Criteria Base (CCB) is an extensive electronic library of construction guide specifications, manuals, standards and many other essential criteria documents. Published and updated continuously, CCB contains the complete unabridged, approved, current electronic equivalents of over 10,000 documents direct from participating federal agencies. CCB is the most effective tool available for finding and using current, approved U.S. construction criteria.
- Construction Law Today
Construction Law Today is a legal blog about construction contracts, disputes, finance, and the people whose job it is to deal with them. Our approach is to talk informally about each of these things. And talk straight and to the point, without a lot of technical jargon and legalese. Think of it like sitting down with a friend from school who is a construction lawyer to talk over a cold and refreshing beverage.
- National Association of Home Builders
Construction Codes and Standards links to resources on codes, standards, accessibility, energy efficiency, green building, fire protection, indoor environment issues.
- Unified Facilities Guide Specifications (UFGS)
Unified Facilities Guide Specifications (UFGS) are a joint effort of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC), the Air Force Civil Engineer Support Agency (AFCESA) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). UFGS are for use in specifying construction for the military services.
- US Census - Manufacturing and Construction Division's Information Services Center
The Manufacturing and Construction Division's Information Services Center strives to provide quality customer service and offer exclusive data products for data users of the Manufacturing, Mining, and Construction sectors. Representatives are available daily (8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday) at (301) 763-4673 to answer your questions and inform you on the activities of the U.S. economy.
Articles on HG.org Related to Construction Law
- BGH on an Architect’s Responsibilities - GermanyIn a recent judgement, the German Federal Court of Justice (BGH) provided a few clarifications with respect to the responsibilities of an architect towards his clients.
- Workers Compensation: Shoulder InjuriesInsurance companies will often deny benefits. They dispute shoulder injuries by blaming your problems on arthritis or that the injury did not result from a work related incident.
- Buildings: The Matter With Copyrights - GermanyNowadays the subject “Copyright” in the case of buildings occupies architects and builders more and more.
- LIBYAN CONSTRUCTION LAW: CONTRACTOR’S LIABILITIESThe Libyan Civil Transactions Code of 1953 imposes liabilities on both the contractor and the architect. Article 650 of the Civil Code holds the contractor and the architect (or supervising engineer) jointly liable for any minor or major collapse of the building even if the collapse was due to ground defects and/or the building had been approved and accepted by the owner.
- The Three Main Causes of Construction AccidentsMost construction accidents are caused by one of three main reasons. Generally, a failure in training or a poor decision.
- Before You Buy or Sell, Check Indoor Air QualityMold, Radon and other contributing factors to indoor air quality can significantly alter the value of a property and how well it sells. It can even constitute a claim or lawsuit.
- Contractor-Friendly PA Mechanics' Lien ChangeA recent Pennsylvania Superior Court decision may have very well changed the PA Mechanics’ Lien Law dealing with repayment priority, to the benefit of the contractor, when a construction project takes a wrong turn. A mechanic's lien is a security interest that is placed on the title to property for the benefit of those who have supplied labor or materials that improve that property. 49 P.S. § 1101 et seq.
- Workers' Compensation Insurance FraudCrackdown On Workers Compensation Fraud Cases Punishes Business Owners Without Workers Compensation Insurance: Two recent cases where business owners fail to maintain workers compensation insurance are showing that law officials will not stand for businesses that commit workers' compensation fraud and violate state law.
- Appeals Against Decisions of Tax Authorities - UkraineRequired part of doing business in all countries is the taxation, and Ukraine is no exception. It happens that due to the tax audits, tax authorities can make decisions taxpayers do not agree with. I would like to note that law of Ukraine allows appeal against the actions and decisions of the tax authorities, if the taxpayer does not agree with them.
- Workers' Compensation OverviewConfused about work injuries? A Workers' Comp attorney may be able to help if your claim was denied. If you have concerns about the way your Workers' Compensation claim is being handled, seek legal counsel. - What is Workers' Compensation? When an employee is injured at work, whether or not the worker was at fault, benefits may be available.
- All Real Estate Law Articles
Articles written by attorneys and experts worldwide discussing legal aspects related to Real Estate including: construction law, eminent domain, foreclosure, homeowners association, land use and zoning, landlord and tenant law, property law, property management.