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    Jul. 27, 2021
    Recent surges in material prices have caused many construction industry participants to question their rights and remedies under their contracts as well as change their future contracts to address substantial price increases. Brian Zimmerman discusses the recent price increases and the contract clauses implicated thereby.
    Jul. 27, 2021
    Recent surges in material prices have caused many construction industry participants to question their rights and remedies under their contracts as well as change their future contracts to address substantial price increases. Brian Zimmerman discusses the recent price increases and the contract clauses implicated thereby.
    Jun. 04, 2021
    Damage caused by defects that a home's seller knew about but did not disclose can be a nasty surprise. Sellers, buyers, real estate agents, home inspectors, and contractors all have responsibilities to look closely and carefully at any property whose purchase they are involved with.
    May 25, 2021
    What’s the best method to calculate an equitable adjustment when a contractor encounters a differing site condition? Brian R. Smigelski outlines the hierarchy of methodologies utilized in Wisconsin.
    May 13, 2021
    A recent ruling provides a hard lesson for contractors about partial lien waivers. James Thiel discusses the case and the ruling, and the lesson learned.
    May 03, 2021
    The City of Madison’s bird-safe glass ordinance may fly in the face of the state of Wisconsin’s Uniform Commercial Building Code (Uniform Code). John Schulze discusses the ordinance and its challengers.
    Mar. 10, 2021
    Wisconsin’s energy market is shifting toward renewable energy – are renewable energy third-party financing arrangements the new third rail? Nathan Jurowski discusses the legislative and regulatory changes that could stimulate private investment in Wisconsin’s commercial and residential renewable energy and provide opportunities for local contractors.
    Feb. 26, 2021
    Residential construction contracts pose unique challenges for contract drafters in Wisconsin. Andrea Murdock offers advice on what to include in your residential construction contracts to avoid disputes and unnecessary costs.
    Feb. 10, 2021
    Construction attorneys need to be familiar with intellectual property principles and copyright matters associated with their clients’ businesses. In part 2 of this two-part series, Bryan Kroes discusses additional practical copyright considerations, including trademarks and patents.
    Feb. 09, 2021
    Construction attorneys should be familiar with intellectual property principles and copyright matters associated with their clients’ businesses. In part 1 of this two-part series, Bryan Kroes provides an introduction to copyright and how it intersects with construction projects.
    Jan. 22, 2021
    Most commercial contracts will contain an indemnity clause. But how are they being used? Turns out, you can use them not just for protection. Matthew McClean discusses the various uses of the clause – and case law surrounding its use.
    Dec. 22, 2020
    A recent Court of Appeals decision confirms the high standard for reversing an arbitration decision. Kevin Long discusses the decision’s takeaway – it is important to provide an arbitrator the opportunity to cure.
    Dec. 08, 2020
    The amount of solar energy being constructed in Wisconsin is increasing, thanks primarily to two factors: the rapidly declining costs of manufacturing solar panels and the availability of federal tax incentives.
    Dec. 01, 2020
    The risks presented by unknown site conditions are difficult to identify and evaluate, and the costs to address them can be very substantial. Saul Glazer discusses the necessity of using DSC – differing site conditions – clauses in construction contracts.
    Nov. 10, 2020
    A recent Wisconsin Court of Appeals decision reminds construction attorneys that clients working for municipal entities can have a layer of legal protection based on municipal immunity. Patrick Whiting discusses the details and implications of the decision.
    Oct. 09, 2020
    A recent rule proposed by the U.S. Department of Labor would make it easier to classify workers as independent contractors under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Lida Bannink discusses the proposed rule and its implications.
    Aug. 03, 2020
    A recent Wisconsin Supreme Court decision provides some clarity for Wis. Stat. section 895.447, but raises further questions on the enforceability of other common risk transfer and limitation clauses in construction contracts. Scott J. Thomsen talks aboutlessons to be learned from the decision and its impact on construction contracts.
    Jul. 08, 2020
    With the ongoing economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, construction lien rights have become more vital than ever to businesses in the construction industry. Steven Slawinski provides a refresher course on the basics of construction liens on privately owned construction projects in Wisconsin.
    Jun. 19, 2020
    With the rise in residential and commercial development in rural areas, rural property owners may face an unplanned expense – building or repairing a fence. Jason Brasch explains what to know about Wisconsin’s fence laws.
    Jun. 10, 2020
    What happens when a subcontractor suffers an economic loss due to another subcontractor? Roy E. Wagner and Lauren Triebenbach discuss a recent court of appeals decision that says the economic loss doctrine bars negligence claims for solely economic lossessustained by one subcontractor as a result of another.
    May 04, 2020
    Carefully crafted, an integration clause with non-reliance and tort disclaimer language may avoid common law and statutory misrepresentation claims. Scott J. Thomsen discusses a recent Wisconsin Supreme Court decision and highlights how current standard form construction contract language may not sufficiently protect the contracting parties.
    Apr. 06, 2020
    To weather the indefinite storm of COVID-19, commercial construction contractors should consider internal and external preparedness best practices. Nathan Jurowski examines best practices for contractors to protect their employees, prepare for business interruption, and negotiate with clients in the face of supply chain disruption, suspension of work, and excusable delays.
    Mar. 31, 2020
    David McCormack of Axley Brynelson discusses new guidance from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency adding landscapers to the list of essential workers.
    Mar. 23, 2020
    Now is the time to plan – and act – for what will come at the end of the coronavirus outbreak. With project delays inevitable in the era of COVID-19, James Dash offers advice on what you can do now to avoid future lawsuits and to advance your business interests
    Mar. 20, 2020
    Now is the time to plan – and act – for what will come at the end of the coronavirus outbreak. With project delays inevitable in the era of COVID-19, James Dash offers advice on what you can do now to avoid future lawsuits and to advance your business interests.
    Mar. 03, 2020
    With the recent move of 3D construction printing out of the research labs and onto construction jobsites, there is a disconnect between the available technology and construction law. Bryan Kroes discusses the future of 3D printing and construction law.
    Feb. 04, 2020
    The estate of a career pipefitter who died from mesothelioma recently lost an appeal on claims that asbestos exposure caused his cancer and the exposure, in the course of his employment, violated the state’s safe place statute.
    Oct. 29, 2019
    Environmental issues that arise during construction projects can bring your clients projects to a halt. Sean Frye give tips on preparing and responding when the unexpected arises so your clients can keep their projects on track. “Knowing how to respond and being proactive saves the client time and money and keeps the project on track,” he writes.
    Aug. 27, 2019
    Gov. Tony Evers introduced a state budget that included significant public construction investment and the rollback of labor reforms. John Schulze discusses the proposed budget and its path through the Wisconsin Legislature.
    Jun. 21, 2019
    Independent contractor misclassification is a growing issue in Wisconsin, and can lead to complications when a worker is injured on the job. Matthew Lein discusses the potential consequences of misclassifying workers in Wisconsin.
    May 14, 2019
    Improperly classifying workers exposes an employer to significant fines and penalties. Andrea Murdock discusses various tests employers should use in determining whether to treat workers as independent contractors or employees.
    Apr. 03, 2019
    Most public construction contracts must be awarded to the lowest responsible bidder. However, the word “responsible” is often overlooked, and state agencies and local governments often feel compelled to award the work to the lowest bidder even if the contractor may be problematic. Cynthia Buchko discusses the “responsible bidder” legal standard in public contracting.
    Mar. 19, 2019
    There is a common belief that subcontractors and material suppliers do not have any lien rights arising from a public improvement project. But this is not accurate, says Brian Smigelski.
    Feb. 14, 2019
    Assistive technology is becoming more prevalent and accepted in the workplace. Eric Meier discusses some of the latest technology and legal considerations surrounding the employee data that is captured by wearable technology.
    Feb. 06, 2019
    While the personal property tax on machinery, tools, and patterns in Wisconsin was eliminated on Jan. 1, 2018, confusion still exists about what is or is not exempt. John Schulze discusses this new area of tax exemption and what it applies to, and gives tips on what to do if your client believes their property is taxed unfairly.
    Dec. 20, 2018
    What should you say when your client asks, “Can I recover attorney fees?” While rare, there are several circumstances where clients can recover fees in construction disputes. Lauren Triebenbach and Mark Schmidt outline different grounds for attorney fee recovery.
    Nov. 12, 2018
    Tenant buildouts can place fee owners and contractors at risk during construction projects. Saul Glazer discusses options for both contractors and fee owners to protect their respective interests.
    Nov. 07, 2018
    In early 2018, the Wisconsin Supreme Court expanded the scope of the Building Permit Rule to encompass all land included in a building permit application, not just the buildings themselves. Adam Voskuil discusses what led to that decision and its potential effects moving forward.
    Oct. 23, 2018
    With the advent of new construction delivery methods, the limits of protections from the Spearin Doctrine have been tested. Patrick Whiting discusses the intersection of the Spearin Doctrine and these new delivery methods.
    Oct. 03, 2018
    Join the State Bar of Wisconsin Construction and Public Contract Law and Labor and Employment Law sections on Nov. 14 in Pewaukee for a CLE event that explores the barriers women face in the workforce.
    Sep. 25, 2018
    When drafting construction contracts, it's good to pay attention to how disputes may be resolved. But how can you possibly know at the time of contracting which dispute resolution method is best? James Dash discusses what to consider when writing binding dispute resolution clauses.
    Jul. 11, 2018
    Did you know that 14 State Bar of Wisconsin sections are blogging? Recently, four different sections released four new blogs on Wisconsin’s new child relocation statute, considerations for mediation, and the civil procedure overhaul.
    Jun. 05, 2017
    A state appeals court has ruled that plaintiff entities and individuals lack standing to challenge city resolutions concerning Tax Incremental Financing (TIF) districts through declaratory action, but may do so by way of certiorari review.
    Apr. 11, 2017
    A construction company that severed a sewer line is not liable because it has immunity as a government contractor, the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled.
    Oct. 10, 2016
    Whether or not you like the economic loss doctrine, in construction circumstances it appears here to stay – after a recent and well-reasoned decision in Milwaukee County Circuit Court regarding Wis. Stat. section 895.447.
    Jan. 26, 2016
    A criminal conviction in Wisconsin can lead to deportation for persons who are not U.S. citizens. But can judges consider a defendant’s immigration status as a factor in fashioning a sentence? The Wisconsin Supreme Court may soon decide.
    Nov. 09, 2015
    The Wisconsin Supreme Court may decide whether a hot air balloon business that donated free, tethered hot air balloon rides during a charity event is immune from a lawsuit by a person injured from a runaway hot air balloon.
    Sep. 15, 2015
    When an underlying complaint does not allege a covered insurance claim, courts must not look outside of the four corners of the complaint to determine whether there is a duty to defend, a state appeals court has ruled.
    Jul. 15, 2015
    July 15, 2015 – In general, parties to litigation must pay their own expenses, including attorney fees, even if they win. This “pay-your-own-way” rule can create some uncertainties between parties, especially parties to construction contracts, says Milwaukee attorney James Braza.
    Jul. 01, 2015
    America’s Dairyland also prizes its lakes and rivers. But as high-capacity wells proliferate in Wisconsin, agriculture and other groundwater users are posing risks to the amount and health of the water, bringing to the legal forefront disagreements about access to the waters that lie beneath.

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