Construction

With decades of experience in every facet of construction law, Downey Brand’s Construction Law Practice Group represents all players in the construction process, including owners, general contractors, architects, engineers, subcontractors of every tier, materials suppliers, and sureties. Our experience spans both public and private works, and includes the entire construction spectrum from heavy civil, roadway, water, power plant, and other infrastructure projects, to steel high-rise structures, to site improvement and development projects.

We help our clients devise practical solutions to problems that may arise during the earliest phases of project conception and design, through contract drafting, bidding procedures and protests, and dispute management during design and construction. Where disputes cannot be avoided, our group has extensive experience with litigating virtually every category and subcategory of construction disputes. Scope-of-work disputes, change order battles, critical path delay claims, design conflicts, project close-out, warranty and defective work claims, payment and performance bond issues, and prompt-payment disputes are frequent subjects of our practice. After construction is complete, we are equally well-versed in indemnity and insurance coverage issues associated with construction defect claims.

In addition to the construction-specific attorneys in the group, we can tap into Downey Brand’s numerous other practice-area practitioners, including those from our corporate, tax, water, environmental, land use, real estate, and employment law practice groups. The attorneys in these groups work seamlessly to bring the right expertise to bear on any problem our clients may encounter.

Downey Brand has the largest litigation practice of any firm in the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valley.  Consequently, our group can easily buttress its own considerable litigation experience in cases with larger staffing demands. Our experience in virtually every state and federal court in California means that Downey Brand’s practice is well-suited to handle cases located throughout the state.

Through participation in community affairs and representation of clients, we have a wealth of practical knowledge and contacts to help facilitate any transaction.

Additionally, members of the Construction Group not only keep current with evolving changes in the law but often take the lead by making presentations and speeches to interested groups and writing papers for publication in leading law and industry journals. Beyond keeping abreast of the legal side of the construction industry, our attorneys participate in several trade organizations to appreciate our clients’ viewpoints and concerns.


Selected Experience

  • Lead counsel for a school district in connection with approximately $70 Million in new school construction. The general contractor overbilled the district millions of dollars and abandoned the projects. Successfully mediated 13 subcontractor claims in 3 days. Downey Brand successfully brought claims against the general contractor, its principals, an assistant superintendent of the district, and the general contractors’ accountants.
  • Represented general contractor in a $20 million dollar termination for default case against a large California state agency which involved critical path delay and additional scope of work disputes.
  • Successfully represented numerous general contractors against Caltrans for delay and extra work claims resulting in multimillion-dollar settlements for our clients.
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  • Lead counsel for a school district in connection with approximately $70 Million in new school construction. The general contractor overbilled the district millions of dollars and abandoned the projects. Successfully mediated 13 subcontractor claims in 3 days. Downey Brand successfully brought claims against the general contractor, its principals, an assistant superintendent of the district, and the general contractors’ accountants.
  • Represented general contractor in a $20 million dollar termination for default case against a large California state agency which involved critical path delay and additional scope of work disputes.
  • Successfully represented numerous general contractors against Caltrans for delay and extra work claims resulting in multimillion-dollar settlements for our clients.
  • Successfully negotiated a resolution of a differing site condition claim on large bridge construction project. Dispute was negotiated mid-project as a result of the owner threatening to terminate the general contractor. Settlement resulted in owner granting additional days and compensation to our client the general contractor.
  • Represented a private university against a general contractor for defect claims arising out of the construction of a new dental school, recovered over $28 million in settlements.
  • Handled multiple differing site condition claims on behalf of general contractors.
  • Pursued claims on behalf of a public entity against design professionals for defective design documents related to a micro tunneling project under the Santa Ana River.
  • Represented general contractor in litigation against public entity over extra work and delay claims on a public university dormitory construction project.
  • Successfully represented general contractor to collect outstanding amounts owed to client after several developers filed for bankruptcy protection. Collected all outstanding amounts owed to client, including interest and attorneys’ fees.
  • Drafted and negotiated over $90 million worth of construction and design contracts for a dental school in San Francisco.
  • Successfully defended general contractor in extra work claims arising out of a construction project at CSU Chico.
  • Represented site improvement contractor in several lawsuits arising from failed subdivision projects.  Recovered over $7.5 million.
  • Represented subcontractor in multi-party complex litigation over multi-million dollar high school construction project.
25 Attorneys
Brenda C. Bass

Brenda C. Bass

Senior Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5385 direct

Kelly M. Breen

Counsel

Sacramento 916.520.5485 direct

Sophia B. Castillo

Partner

San Francisco 415.848.4814 direct

Marc A. Centor

Partner

San Francisco 415.848.4838 direct

Joseph G. De Angelis

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5308 direct

Jamie P. Dreher

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5478 direct

Reno 775.329.5900 direct

Jay-Allen Eisen

Outside Counsel

Sacramento 916.520.5290 direct

Cassandra M. Ferrannini

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5387 direct

Sean J. Filippini

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5430 direct

Darrin D. Gambelin

Partner

San Francisco 415.848.4810 direct

Paul R. Gaus

Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5382 direct

Nicole E. Granquist

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5369 direct

Tyler J. Horn

Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5378 direct

Christopher Miles Kolkey

Senior Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5320 direct

Michael J. Laino

Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5360 direct

Joseph K. Little

Associate

Sacramento 916.520.5203 direct

Scott D. McElhern

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5367 direct

Daniel J. McVeigh

Of Counsel

Sacramento 916.520.5438 direct

Bret F. Meich

Partner

Reno 775.997.7418 direct

Kathryn L. Oehlschlager

Partner

San Francisco 415.848.4820 direct

Meghan A. Quinn

Senior Associate

Sacramento 916-520-4816 direct

Robert P. Soran

Partner

Sacramento 916.520.5364 direct

M. Max Steinheimer

Of Counsel

Stockton 209.472.3926 direct

Sacramento 916.444.1000 direct

Matthew J. Weber

Partner

Stockton 209.472.3922 direct

Sacramento 916.444.1000 direct

Jennifer L. Williams

Counsel

Stockton 209.472.3918 direct

Sacramento 916.444.1000 direct

Announcements

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Speaking Engagements / Events

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