Who is the ideal expert witness?

Written by Lyle Charles

Construction Expert Witnesses can shift a case in your favor. However, selecting the right expert witness can be difficult as there are many available and they hold similar credentials and experience. Here are some tips on how to select an ideal expert witness.

  1. Academic credentials – Credentials are important, but with most expert witnesses holding the same or very similar qualifications, it can be difficult to select the best expert for your case. The ideal way to select your expert is to ask them what cases they have worked on and how they intend to intend to approach your case.
  2. Demeanor and communication skills – It is always best to choose an expert witness who is pleasing on the stand and yet has a commanding presence. Therefore, it is best to look at someone who can effectively communicate with the jury. Being able to handle being cross-examined will help the jury believe the expert and thus strengthen your case.
  3. Preparation and thoroughness – Your expert should be able to study your case and develop arguments that stand up to The expert should, therefore, be detailed and able to understand all areas of the case.

For reputed construction expert witnesses seek help from construction consulting services that offer this service.

Lyle Charles is a construction consulting services firm that hires experienced professionals and a structural steel expert to cater to your construction project needs.

Structural steel fabricators

Written by Lyle Charles

Structural steel is one of the best and most ideal materials to use for the construction of commercial and residential buildings. Steel is also strong, eco-friendly, cost effective and long lasting. However to get the best steel for your purpose it is best to get the correct weight and quantity required for your purpose.

Here is a step-by-step method that is recommended by structural steel fabricators for estimating structural steel requirements for your construction project.

Grouping the structural steel by their grade.

Then group the materials per section or member type.

Then group the structural steel by the method it is tied and connected.

Then section the steel materials and the location on the project.

It is important to maintain the sequence of structures by columns and details.

Then specify the beams and details per floor.

Finally remove the quantities for bracing and flooring under a separate area.

Structural steel experts will then calculate the structural drawings prepared after grouping them together. It is important to also calculate the other tools and materials that will be needed to fit your steel. These will include castings, fittings, hardware, and various other tools that are needed for erecting steel structures.

If you are looking for a steel cost estimate for your next project, speak to a construction turnaround services firm that will select a qualified steel fabrication expert for your project.

Lyle Charles is a certified expert witness for the construction industry, specializing in both commercial and residential projects. If you need a steel fabrication expert, he will get you the best.

Five reasons to hire a construction claims consultant

7Written by Lyle Charles

A construction claim is a request for additional time and/or money made by the construction contractor as a result of a change in the terms of the contract. Most changes are due to changes in design, construction or administration. Putting through a claim can involve submitting a number of documents for approval. Therefore it is a good idea to hire a construction claims consultant to analyze the situation that will help to resolve the dispute. Here are 5 reasons to hire a construction claims consultant.

Experience in handling different claims – It is good to hire an experienced construction claims specialists who are aware of project costs, damages, unpaid change orders, cost escalation and delay damages.

Understanding technical jargon – Construction claims constantans will be able to understand and communicate technical jargon that can be difficult to understand. Most often if your construction claim’s consultant is not knowledgeable in certain areas like steel fabrication, he/she may get advice from a steel construction expert to strengthen your case.

Able to take the right course of action – The right course of action can vary depending on the case. Therefore a good consultant will be able to give you a recommendation that will save you money, time and resources.

Stays on top of changing standards – Since construction standards are always changing, your construction claims consultant will help you maintain a good position to ensure you receive a favorable outcome.

Experience in negotiations – Negotiations are the best way to a speedy resolution and consultants possess the experience to handling such meetings that provide their client’s with the best outcomes.

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Lyle Charles is an expert in commercial and residential construction and construction claims analysis.

How hiring the right claim consultant, can save you money

9Written by Lyle Charles

Managing claims is a vital part of project management as it ensures that the project stays within budgets and that companies make their estimated profits. However, handling claims is not easy as it involves a lot of technical knowledge and expertise.

Hiring a construction claim consultant will help the firm effectively manage claims and provide the best possible solutions for problems, obstructions, and complications that may arise. These construction claims consultants can also work as construction expert witnesses if a claim goes into court proceedings.

The benefits of hiring a claim consultant include:

Help to draft the right documents for a construction project.

Sit through negotiations and help to resolve disputes.

Experts will provide knowledge and experience that may not be available to the company through their employees.

Assist and advise the company’s management to properly understand a claim.

Prepare the contract terms that will prove a proper defense on claims received.

The company can focus their energies on development and worry less about legal matters.

An experienced claims consultant will be able to provide analysis on different types of projects and claims, providing the company with the knowledge to make the right decisions.

Consultants will provide recommendations that are focused on saving resources, money and time.

Consultants will help stay in touch with the latest changes in the construction industry and make suitable recommendations to the management.

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Construction is costly without factoring in the costs of litigation, which is becoming more common by the day. According to Lyle Charles Consulting, construction & turnaround services can help cut those costs and provide a fair resolution to disputes that commonly arise.

Construction advisory services

lylecharles5Written by Lyle Charles

Companies that offer construction advisory services provide professionals with industry experience that will help your business in the areas of engineering, architecture, business, accounting and law. Construction firms may find it difficult to handle the complex challenges that arise on capital projects. Therefore it is advisable to seek advice when needed from professionals, to avoid project delays that can be costly.

Most construction advisory services offer the following services for capital project delivery:

Project cost control and financial control – These professionals will assist in conducting construction project cost and financial control analyses periodically during the performance. Plus they will also look at financial aspects, after project completion and ensure that clients receive the projected return on investment.

Project management assistance and oversight – Professionals in this area will assist to manage projects effectively in order to increase the probability of successful completion. They will also look into delays, costs, overruns, and claims.

Contract cost and performance audits – Some company’s who are qualified will be able to perform construction audits, cost audits and performance audits. This ensures that the owner-client will only pay the construction costs that are incurred by the contractor.

Cost segregation – This process should start at the beginning when a property is purchased. Experts will identify, separate, and reclassify qualified real and personal property into smaller segments according to the law.

Construction expert witness – Expert witnesses can be provided for construction firms that have been faced with legal claims on issues such as delays, construction faults etc.

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Lyle Charles is an expert in commercial in residential construction and is certified in construction mediation and construction claims analysis.

Who is a construction expert witness?

close-up of a businessman shaking hands with a businesswoman --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

close-up of a businessman shaking hands with a businesswoman — Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Written by Lyle Charles

Construction expert witnesses have extensive knowledge about the construction industry, including construction accidents and construction injury. They testify to help inform the trier of the facts relating to a construction lawsuit. These may include areas such as building delays, codes, compliance, construction costs, and construction defects. They will also discuss the building process, construction contracts, financing, bonds, and insurance etc.

A legal claim arising from a construction project may involve contract law, torts, and property law. In most cases, disputes will arise on delays of a project, which fall under construction delay claims. A construction law claim can include two or more parties. For example, condominium tenants can sue a real estate developer.

Construction expert witnesses may help a case and provide expertise in a particular field. These experts can include real estate developers, contractors, safety managers, electricians, and compliance experts etc. Experts will be licensed to speak on particular subjects that they have a wide knowledge on.

A construction expert may consult, report, and testify on some of the following;

Design evaluation

Cost estimates

Standards of care

Quality issues

Accident investigation

Building code compliance

Construction defects

Construction management

Construction safety

Forensic investigations

Governmental regulations

Infrastructure projects

Price discrepancies

Structural engineering

Toxic mold

Work zone safety

If you are looking to hire a construction expert witness to help your case, it is best that you find one through a reputed law firm.

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When you need a bit of extra help with your current build, look no further than Lyle Charles for support and insights where it matters. Through his firm, you can get everything from his skills as a construction consulting services to help with turnaround services, consultations on matters that may be holding you back.

 

How to Handle a Dispute Over Construction Materials

construction-bricksWhen there is a dispute in construction, work can stop altogether while both parties attempt to hash out the problem and recoup losses. First, construction consulting services should determine whether a claim is worth pursuing, then measures should be taken to expedite the claim and seek resolution.

Whatever the case, avoid trial at all costs! Trial is an expensive endeavor, and you’ll quickly find your bills adding up just to try and recoup your losses. You may have to hire a construction expert witness, pay court fees or find yourself subject to a ruling that goes against your interests. With this advice, you’ll be ready to handle any construction dispute as quickly as possible.

Determine if the Claim is Worth Pursuing

A construction claim analysis will show whether the claim is worth pursuing, and the answer is pretty simple. If you stand to lose significant sums of money fighting a claim, either through work stoppage or attorney’s fees, it’s not worth the cost of pursuing the claim. It’s ideal to recoup all losses, which is why documentation is crucial to successful claim resolution.

Failing to provide proper documentation might lead to mediation, where both parties attempt to sort out what happened and come to a conclusion benefitting everyone.

The end goal is to avoid trial, which usually leads to longer work stoppages as both sides settle their dispute. Work can rarely continue without some kind of resolution, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to settle disputes as quickly as possible.


Lyle Charles specializes in construction claim analysis for commercial and residential projects of any size or budget. Contact Lyle Charles to learn more about settling construction disputes.

Causes of Short Term Vacancies in Construction

short-term-vacanciesShort term vacancies can cause a serious problem for any construction project, and it’s important to come up with a contingency plan on how to deal with these types of unplanned events. Construction is very much a business where time is money, so be prepared to hire construction & turnaround services as needed to fill in some of these gaps. As you’ll soon learn, accidents and departures can be triggered at a moment’s notice.

Injury

By far, injury is the most common cause for a dispute and ultimately a work stoppage due to short term vacancies. Injuries can happen to anyone, it’s a myth that only the ground crews are prone to problems. A project manager could be surveying the site when an injury occurs, leaving an important vacancy in upper management that could be filled by a construction consultant.

Disputes

Whether it’s the scope of work, changes to the project or delays in supplies, disputes can cause serious problems on site. It’s important to fulfill any construction claims management as soon as possible so work can continue. In some cases, it may even be more financially wise to accept an event as a loss and move forward. Every situation is different, but underestimating disputes quickly leads to lost money for all parties involved on a project.

Final Thoughts

Short term vacancies are not easy to anticipate, but they are easy to fix. Make sure you have crews on standby, and consult with more experienced consultants to help fill in the gaps. Sometimes, creating a better safety policy is all that’s needed. Evaluate your operation and look for gaps where these short term vacancies might create major problems.


Lyle Charles is a construction consultant with more than 40 years of experience in commercial construction, and a specialty in communicating with business decision makers.

Successfully Navigating a Claim as a Consultant

construction-consulting-servicesOne of the primary drivers of business for construction consulting services is claim management. Claims are fairly common in construction, and companies will use consulting firms that can quickly handle a claim. Your job as the consultant consists of three phases: identify the type of claim, gather documentation to complete the claim, and advise the client on next steps.

Identifying the Claim

Some of the most common construction claims involve personnel, but others involve shortages and work stoppages. If a refinery hires construction turnaround services, for instance, and the crew is late in their work versus the initial assessment, it’s usually going to be a claim related to work stoppage. The crew itself may have a personnel claim to file if their failure was the result of contractors not showing up on time.

Gather Documents

The backbone of any claim is the documentation, so you have to be careful in proving your case. Make sure you have receipts for the client’s purchases, and work orders documenting their side of the work. Look for key documents that prove what your client was asked to do, what actually happened, and within what time frames.

Advising the Client

In some cases, mediation or even trial may be the best course of action. You can step in as a construction expert witness at that point, to help argue the claim, or recommend a mediator for the client to consider. Remember, the client will be legally bound to abide by the outcome so your reputation is staked on these types of decisions. Carefully assess your client’s chances of winning a favorable verdict if he must move forward to recover losses.


Lyle Charles is a construction expert witness with 40 years of experience navigating construction claims, and assisting businesses of all sizes to resolve claims quickly and efficiently.

Two Methods to Settle a Construction Dispute Outside of the Courtroom

construction-disputeWhat do you do if one of the senior level managers leaves your project? Do you have any plans that you can put into motion? That’s where construction advisory services can help. Bringing your dispute to court can be a good final resolution if you can’t solve the dispute in another way, but there are methods to keep those disputes from ever seeing the inside of a courtroom.

Claim Resolution

The simplest method is construction claims resolution. Determine what the claim is, file the proper paperwork and wait for the dispute to settle. That’s where things get tricky. If you don’t have a system in place for gathering and filing important paperwork, you’ll quickly lose contracts and receipts. If you’re not used to project planning, make sure you hire a consultant to help you review the plans. One of the most common claims is not accurately foreseeing the scope of work.

Mediation

Another method crews use to avoid court cases is to utilize private mediation. A private mediator is someone who is familiar with the laws surrounding the case, but not the case itself. Mediation is useful when you want to settle a dispute without burning bridges, and it often ends in an amicable agreement.

You need to prepare your documentation for mediation, and to get your story straight. Speaking with a consultant can help you if you don’t have a team in-house to review claims as they come in.

As a last result, you may be left with no alternative than to go to trial. In these situations, make sure you have an expert witness lined up to help explain your side of the dispute.


Lyle Charles Consulting has offered crisis, turnaround and short-term management solutions for commercial and residential projects for more than 30 years.