Texas Construction Law Updates


Liquidated-damage provision enforced by Houston Court of Appeals

Jason Cagle - Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The First District Court of Appeals in Houston recently enforced a liquidated-damage provision. The opinion analyzes whether the liquidated damages constituted an unenforceable “penalty” under Texas law. A liquidated-damage provision permits a party enforcing a contract to recover damages based on an amount or formula agreed upon in advance. However, the breaching party may invalidate the liquidated-damage provision if it demonstrates ... read more


2017 Legislative Updates

Ian Fullington - Tuesday, January 23, 2018

In Texas, the 85th Legislature enacted several important pieces of legislation relevant to construction. Overall, only 18.3% or 1,211 total bills, passed the Texas Legislature and 50 bills were vetoed by Gov. Greg Abbott. Among other budgetary items, funding for schools was reduced by approximately $1.1 billion and about $2 billion was taken from highway projects. While high-profile reforms such as lien-law modernization and right-to-repa ... read more


Construction contracts can incorporate documents executed by the parties without describing them with specificity

Keith Heath - Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Construction contracts often “incorporate by reference” other documents that provide additional terms or further define a party’s obligations. However, the specificity required when describing the document differs depending on whether the document has been executed by the parties. As discussed in a recent case, if the parties execute the document to be incorporated, courts apply less-stringent standards on how the document must be identified  ... read more


Pay attention to the signature block and guaranty provisions when signing a contract

Nick Brooks - Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The president of a builder signed a contract, but (1) neglected to put the full legal name of his business in the signature block and (2) a provision of the contract stated that “the obligations under this agreement are also a personal obligation of the builder representative signing below.” After the builder defaulted, the owner sued the president of the builder as an individual. The Court ruled that the president was not individually li ... read more


Court narrowly construes law limiting contract-notice requirements

Nick Brooks - Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Under the Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code, “a contract stipulation that requires a claimant to give notice of a claim for damages as a condition precedent to the right to sue on the contract is not valid unless the stipulation is reasonable. A stipulation that requires notification within less than 90 days is void.” Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 16.071. In a recent case, an owner sought to enforce a provision in a constru ... read more


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