Construction & Real Estate

Construction clients benefit from having lawyers who understand the construction and design industries.  Simply put, our lawyers have mastered the construction and design business, and our firm is widely recognized as a leader in construction litigation and arbitration as a result.  Moreover, many of our dedicated and experienced construction lawyers either have engineering or architectural degrees or are former real estate developers, military officers, or plant managers.

Our broad knowledge base powers our thorough record of service to the construction and design industries.  Lewis Thomason works closely with clients to identify, solve, and prevent problems in all phases of the

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Construction clients benefit from having lawyers who understand the construction and design industries.  Simply put, our lawyers have mastered the construction and design business, and our firm is widely recognized as a leader in construction litigation and arbitration as a result.  Moreover, many of our dedicated and experienced construction lawyers either have engineering or architectural degrees or are former real estate developers, military officers, or plant managers.

Our broad knowledge base powers our thorough record of service to the construction and design industries.  Lewis Thomason works closely with clients to identify, solve, and prevent problems in all phases of the construction process.  During the design and planning phase, we represent owners and contractors before zoning boards and planning commissions.  Throughout the construction process, we help clients with drafting and negotiating agreements with contractors and subcontractors, design professionals, and service providers.  We have also defended claims in both state and federal courts involving construction defects, project-critical path delays, payment, differing site conditions, acceleration, lost productivity, and other claims.

In addition to the decades of experience in our construction practice group, our firm’s attorneys are active in the Tennessee Association of Construction Counsel, the American Bar Association’s construction law committees, the Construction Industry Panel of the American Arbitration Association, and design and construction industry organizations like the Associated Builders & Contractors, Associated General Contractors, American Institute of Architects, Construction Specifications Institute, Tennessee Association of Plumbing, Heating, and Cooling Contractors, and Tennessee Society of Professional Engineers.  Our attorneys also regularly present seminars and publish the Tennessee Construction Law Journal, an online newsletter, and the informative construction industry Blog, Tennessee Construction Lawyers.  Several of our construction clients have retained us as general counsel, and, under our retainer agreements with them, we provide office hours to address and answer construction-related questions.

Architect, Engineer, and Surveyor Professional Liability

Lewis Thomason attorneys have defended design professionals in hundreds of professional malpractice cases, including multi-million-dollar claims involving major sporting arenas in Memphis, Nashville, and Knoxville.  Our firm has represented contractors in numerous disputes arising from a variety of claims, including alleged construction defects, project critical path delays, payment, differing site conditions, acceleration, and lost productivity.

We also represent contractors and design professionals before licensing boards, including applying for licensure and navigating professional discipline hearings and appeals.  Our attorneys have also had significant involvement in federal, state, and local government construction project disputes and claims, and we represent owners and sureties in matters from simple claims to major project defaults.

Eminent Domain and Condemnation

Lewis Thomason attorneys have extensive experience defending the property rights of both individual landowners and businesses in eminent domain proceedings.  We also represent governmental authorities that want to acquire property for a wide variety of public uses, including airports, highways, bridges, water and sanitation facilities, parks, and schools.  We have represented eminent domain clients in lawsuits in state and federal courts, including inverse condemnation suits, to determine just compensation for condemned property and any damages to a remainder interest in the event of a partial taking.

Whether representing the property owner or a governmental authority, we are involved in every aspect of the acquisition, including assisting clients in the pre-condemnation negotiation phase.  We employ a team approach to eminent domain matters and help our clients retain professionals who can provide expert testimony, where needed.  Our approach and depth of experience frequently help our clients resolve eminent domain matters without litigation, but, even where settlements have not been reached, our involvement from the beginning helps both sides narrow the issues for trial and better understand their differences on valuation.

Real Estate Law

Whether buying or selling, financing or leasing, we are adept at working with both residential and commercial real estate clients in a variety of ways.  Our firm has represented both residential and commercial clients in a variety of real estate transactions, including development, franchising, and zoning land use.  We have helped shopping center and subdivision developers, buyers and sellers of real estate, commercial and residential landlords, buyers and sellers of real estate, commercial and residential landlords, and commercial tenants with drafting and revising sales agreements, leases, deeds, and many other kinds of contracts.

When necessary, Lewis Thomason attorneys also go to court to enforce the agreements that we draft.  We have also resolved many title disputes for title insurance companies through litigation.  Our litigation approach is born of our experience with regularly engaging in title examinations, title opinions, title insurance, preparation of deeds for the transfer of real property, real estate financing and secured loans, closings, boundary and survey matters, lien claims, and the related representation of borrowers, developers, banks, credit unions, and other commercial lenders.

Attorneys in our real estate practice group have extensive experience representing clients before state and local planning, zoning, and development agencies and local elected city councils and county commissions on zoning and land use issues, including variances, waste disposal, commercial development, and construction of residential subdivisions.  These clients include industrial, commercial, and residential real estate developers, landfill operators, billboard companies, wireless telecommunications companies, and homeowners associations.  The majority of Lewis Thomason attorneys who maintain a significant practice involving municipal zoning are involved with municipal boards and councils that have jurisdiction over zoning issues.  Our reputation within the land use community and our familiarity with local practices, procedures, and governmental personnel enable us to more effectively advocate for our clients in achieving their goals efficiently.

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