In residential construction, the recent legislative amendments to Chapter 27 of the Texas Property Code (the Residential Construction Liability Act or the “RCLA”) have garnered significant attention in the industry, and understandably so as there were many important tweaks for Texas homebuilders made by the Texas Legislature.  Often overlooked are the Texas Legislature’s amendments to

engineer meeting for an architectural project. working with partner and engineering tools working on blueprint architectural project at the construction site at desk in the office.

Co-author: Stephanie Snyder-Zuasnabar

Texas has new lien laws that affect all construction projects with a prime contract dated on or after January 1, 2022.  The new lien laws are particularly helpful to architects, engineers, and surveyors.  Design professionals will benefit from the expanded lien rights provided by this new legislation.  Lower tier design professionals will

Vintage 1957 United States Silver Certificate under Red, White, and Blue American Flag

Since arriving in the United States the Coronavirus pandemic has taken a devastating toll on nearly every aspect of our economy. Industries such as construction have faced new hardships and challenges with workplace safety, material and supply chain logistics, labor shortages, communication and business development. As construction firms continue to weather the financial burdens

My law partner, David Gair, and I recently wrote a paper regarding the energy-efficient commercial building tax deduction (IRC § 179D).  The upshot is that the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 recently made this deduction permanent.  As discussed in much more detail in the paper, 179D allows for a tax deduction of up to $1.80 per

Drain pipe with frozen stream of water near brick wall of a cottage outdoors in winter

Co-author: Trevor Lawhorn

As evidenced by the unprecedented arctic weather last week and the resulting fallout, emergency construction services are essential. Freezing temperatures, hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters lead to a high demand for remediation and reconstruction services. Contractors are often best positioned to provide the necessary emergency construction services to rebuild businesses, residences

In just the first four months of 2018, among a surge in trade complaints filed by domestic steel manufacturers against foreign rivals (a frequency not seen in over 15 years), and after a lengthy investigation by the Secretary of Commerce concluding “that the present quantities and circumstance of steel imports are ‘weakening our internal economy’ and threaten to impair the national security” of the United States, President Trump has issued two presidential proclamations—adjusting the imports of certain steel products by imposing a 25 percent ad valorem tariff (the “Tariffs”) on those steel products from all countries—granted a permanent extension to the Tariffs for South Korea, Argentina, Australia, and Brazil and has extended a final temporary 30 day exemption from the Tariffs to Canada, Mexico and the member countries of the European Union, the United States’ biggest trading partner.

Co-authors: Jeff Leach, Tim Fandrey.
Published in Pipeline Magazine and Build Houston Magazine.

As a result of newly enacted Texas Senate Bill 1289, buying American iron and steel is now a requirement on certain public infrastructure projects in Texas. Promoted by President Trump, passed by the Texas Legislature in May and signed in to law this summer by Governor Greg Abbott, the new law, effective Sept. 1, 2017, requires that iron and steel be purchased from an American supplier unless the American supplier price is more than 20 percent higher than the price of the cheaper foreign importer. Foreign iron and steel may also be used if American suppliers are not prepared to supply a project, or if there is a compelling state interest that warrants the use of a foreign manufacturer’s steel.

Construction legislation in the 2013 session was much different from 2011.  In 2011 many new construction related laws were passed including governance of indemnities and mechanic’s liens.  In 2013 many significant construction related bills were considered, but relatively few passed.  Nevertheless, the few that did get signed into law are worthy of review.