Practice Area

Construction Litigation


The Construction law and litigation attorneys at Houston Harbaugh understand the intricacies of construction projects, the scope of work as defined in the plans and specifications, the contractual provisions that govern the parties’ roles, and how to resolve disputes as they arise.

Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio

We routinely represent architects and engineers, as well general contractors, subcontractors, developers, owners, suppliers, sureties, and insurers. We have worked on construction projects beginning with early contract negotiation through construction development, including litigating construction disputes relating to large construction and infrastructure developments. We have arbitrated, litigated and mediated construction matters involving:

  • Breach of Contract
  • Delay Claims
  • Design Negligence
  • Request for Equitable Adjustment
  • AIA Construction Contracts
  • Bid Protests
  • Request for Information (RFI)
  • Changer Order (CO)
  • Defective Work/Warranty Claims
  • Mechanics’ Lien Claims
  • Pennsylvania Contractor and Subcontractor Act
  • Pennsylvania Prompt Payment Act
  • Bonding/Surety Claims (Payment on Performance)
  • Improper Termination of Subcontractors
  • Permitting

We have also handled administrative and regulatory matters, including environmental compliance and remediation issues.

Houston Harbaugh can manage the legal aspect of every transaction associated with a construction project, from financing to labor relations to project disputes. Should a dispute arise at any stage of the project that cannot be resolved through structured negotiations, we use our skills, experience and network contacts in and about the industry to proceed with mediation, arbitration, or litigation, depending on the circumstances of the matter.

Construction Litigation Representation

Members of Houston Harbaugh, P.C., have experience representing construction companies, materials suppliers, surety companies and owners in litigation arising out of construction projects. From our office in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, our lawyers serve clients primarily in Pennsylvania, but also in other jurisdictions on a special admission basis.

Our firm provides experience in the Construction Litigation field that includes the defense of general (and sub) contractors in cases brought by owners involving claims of defective construction; the representation of owners against architects, engineers and contractors in claims for defective construction; the representation of contractors and construction managers in disputes with owners and other contractors involving claims for extra compensation and delay damages and claims of third-party damage caused by construction activities; construction delay claims; and the representation of industrial machinery vendors.

Our Representative Construction Lawsuit Experience

Construction litigation experience of the firm’s attorneys includes cases arising out of the following projects:

  • The design and construction of a thin slab, continuous caster, reheat furnace and ladle metallurgical facility for a major steel producer. The case involved claims for extra compensation, acceleration and delay damages brought by a piping subcontractor.
  • The design and construction of a 40-story granite-clad bank headquarters building. This case involved the representation of the building owner in litigation against the architect, general contractor and structural engineer for the costs involved in reanchoring the exterior granite facade of the building 11 years after construction was completed.
  • The construction of over 80 miles of sewer lines and a sewage treatment plant. This case involved the defense of a general contractor who installed the sewer system in a suit brought by the owner, a municipal authority, alleging that over two million gallons per day of groundwater infiltrated into the sewer line through defective joints causing the sewage treatment plant to malfunction.
  • The design and construction of a 10-story apartment building. The case involved the representation of the owner of a 10-story apartment building in an action against the general contractor, architect and materials supplier arising out of defects in the design and construction of the building’s synthetic stucco exterior facade and seeking the cost of removing and replacing the entire facade.
  • The design and construction of the Pittsburgh subway system. This case involved the representation of a subcontractor responsible for the excavation, shoring, backfilling and paving of the Sixth Avenue section of the project in claims against the Port Authority of Allegheny County and the general contractor for extra compensation, acceleration and delay damages.
  • The design and construction of the Pittsburgh Convention Center. This case involved the representation of the excavation subcontractor in claims for extra compensation and delay damages against the General State Authority and the general contractor.
  • Representation of subcontractor in federal court in action against a surety for claims by a painting subcontractor for additional costs resulting from prime contractor’s unilateral change of specifications related to quality of sandblasting on an interstate highway bridge rehabilitation project.
  • Representation of subcontractor in an action in state court against the contractor on a public highway/heavy project for failure to remit payment on verbally approved change orders.
  • Representation of prime contractor on major public project in connection with negotiating claims on project policy relating to alleged defects in design and construction.
  • Representation of prime contractor in federal court for $20 million claim by owner related to alleged improper construction of steel mill and turnkey installation of melting furnace and caster.
  • Representation of prime contractor in action by subcontractor alleging wrongful discharge and removal from project. Obtained verdict in federal court and prevailed on appeal before Third Circuit Court of Appeals.
  • Representation of owner of public works project in common law arbitration matter for alleged extras by contractor.
  • Representation of contractor in AAA arbitration by subcontractor for additional work on public project allegedly not within undefined scope of contract.
  • Representation Related to the Construction of County and Government Property
  • In addition to the foregoing selected cases, Houston Harbaugh attorneys have represented, and are representing, clients in cases involving construction claims arising out of the construction of highways, a railroad line, school buildings, a 50-story steel-clad bank headquarters building, a byproducts coke battery, a 40-story steel-clad office building, a large resort hotel, sewerage systems and an airport runway.

For more information, call 412-281-5060 or send our Pittsburgh construction litigation attorneys an e-mail by completing the contact form on this website.

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