Managing Risks and Avoiding Litigation in Construction
By Nathan | Posted on January 21st, 2016
One of the more dubious distinctions of our industry is that it that it generates a lot of lawsuits. Some of these are generated by individuals trying to recoup damages in the aftermath of a site accident. Another litigation cause is the slowdown or stoppage of project work for reasons ranging from weather to supply delays. And a surprising source of litigation in the construction industry is miscommunications with clients in addition to improperly completed and misfiled paperwork. And that's a shame, because proper daily reporting, among other project management tasks, can actually help to avoid many of the pitfalls that can lead to court. Below are some common blunders that can lead to legal trouble, and how to avoid them.
Don't Pass "Go" Without PaperworkThere was a day when a handshake was enough to get a project started, but that's so early 20th century. Today, no aspect of a construction project should be started without a signed contract in place, even something as mundane as ordering supplies. What's more, no party should sign the contract until they fully understand its stipulations. Contracts are protection for all parties involved in a project, but remember that signing it indicates that you understand and agree with it in full. While writing and reading lengthy contracts is never fun, contractors should be aware that construction software now exists like UDA ConstructionDocs that is easy to download and customize, and produces documents that are legal nationwide.
Keep Up With That PaperworkOne of the less enjoyable aspects of project management is all of the daily reporting. But those reports are important ways to track progress, problems, and payroll needs among other things, so it's necessary that these reports be completed correctly and filed in a timely manner. Fortunately, construction software now exists that makes reporting both faster and even more convenient to do. The Raken app for daily reporting for example, can save up to ninety minutes a day in filing time, and provides the proper formats in which to do so. And the Raken app can be used on a variety of mobile devices, meaning that reports can be filed from sites and reviewed in real time, making it easier to communicate with workers, clients, and shareholders.
Licensing And InsuranceAll firms should make sure that all forms of insurance, licensing, permits, and training are up to date, and not allowed to lapse, even when work is slow. To do so means that a firm runs the risk of not being able to obtain future coverage, and leaves it vulnerable to liability if the worse happens. Don't forget to stay abreast of state requirements in these areas too, as it's not uncommon for them to change.