Betts Patterson Mines

Construction Law

Betts Patterson Mines’ construction team represents owners, developers, declarants, contractors, and suppliers in private and public construction disputes. From contract negotiation to trial work, our construction law attorneys are committed to providing responsive, knowledgeable and efficient legal services to the client. Although we strive to informally resolve disputes, we stand ready to move forward with litigation when necessary.

The Construction Law Group works closely with other practice groups to provide full-service legal counsel for any construction matter. The firm’s unique specialties and structure allow us to provide the services of a large firm, but with the attention, care and efficiency of a much smaller firm. BPM’s construction attorneys are experienced in all phases of construction, including:

  • Defense of developers, declarants, general contractors, subcontractors, material and equipment suppliers in construction defect and worksite injury actions
  • Defense of developers and declarants in Washington Condominium Act and Consumer Protection Act actions
  • Contract preparation, negotiation and analysis
  • Dispute resolution including mediation, arbitration and settlement negotiations
  • Defense of architects, engineers and design professionals in professional liability actions
  • Advice related to commercial general liability insurance, including additional insured coverage
  • Mechanics liens and bond claims
  • Employment advice
  • Real estate financing and secured lending, including document preparation and review
  • Formation of corporations, limited liability companies, joint ventures and partnerships

Representative Cases

  • Defended a developer / declarant in a condominium conversion case.  Condominium Owner’s Association filed suit against developer/declarant seeking damages for construction defects and breach of duties under the Washington Condominium Act and Washington Consumer Protection Act. The trial court granted the declarant’s motion for partial summary judgment, thereby dismissing the Condominium Owner Association’s claims for violation of the Washington Consumer Protection Act; misrepresentation, and for failure to deliver a Public Offering Statement.  This victory resulted in the dismissal of over $1.4 million in claimed damages.
  • Defended a general contractor in a suit arising out of a commercial fire.  Plaintiff claimed property damage and business interruption damages arising out of a fire at his business.  Plaintiff claimed that the general contractor was vicariously liable for its subcontractor’s improper disposal of oil-soaked rags. The trial court granted the client’s motion for summary judgment, ruling that the client was not vicariously liable for the subcontractor’s acts or omissions because he was an independent contractor, not an agent, as argued by Plaintiff.
  • Defended a condominium owner in a construction defect case.  Obtained favorable arbitration award in a claim brought against Homeowners' Association. 
  • Defended an EFIS manufacturer that was sued by homeowners for damages based on breach of warranty and breach of contract claims due to the alleged failure of the exterior finish system.  Obtained a defense verdict for his client in the trial which resulted in a judgment against the general contractor in excess of $800,000.
  • Defended a landowner who was sued in Kitsap County Superior Court for damages resulting from a landslide that was alleged to have been the result of excavation work at the toe of the slope.  By developing evidence to supporting an argument that the failure was due to events unrelated to actions of the down-slope landowner, the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the case against the landowner following jury selection.
  • Defended a company that maintained the sprinklers and fire suppression system in a downtown Seattle restaurant.  In that case, plaintiff claimed negligent maintenance caused the fire suppression system to be inoperative, resulting in over $600,000 in property damage.  Following the deposition of plaintiff’s liability expert that revealed spoliation of evidence by the plaintiff’s investigators and the lack of knowledge of the expert on the construction and operation of a critical discharge valve that could not have failed in the manner claimed by the expert, the case settled for $25,000.
  • Defended a general contractor sued for damages resulting from a severe injury on a construction site involving scaffolding and a concrete pump truck.  By developing facts and a theory demonstrating that the failure occurred due to the selection of scrap lumber by the pump truck operator and not due to improper soil compaction by the general contractor, the case was favorably resolved. 
  • Defended subcontractor in case clarifying spoliation under Washington law.