Hal Hamersmith is a partner in the firm’s Los Angeles office specializing in design and construction contracts, claims, litigation, domestic and international arbitration, construction defects and public contract law. Hal is the former Leader of the firm’s Construction Practice and currently serves as Co-Chair of TerraLex’s Construction, Infrastructure & Mining Practice Group.
Mr. Hamersmith represents public and private owners, contractors, architects and engineers in a wide range of contexts. He regularly negotiates, drafts and advises on contracts (design-build, EPC, construction, architectural and engineering services, construction management services, project control services, procurement of materials and systems, construction manager at risk, program management, etc.) for commercial, industrial, residential, hospital, school, highway/bridge, airport, railway, transit, hospitality and leisure, including hotels and casinos, power plant and other projects, including Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects.
He advises on public contract bidding laws and disputes, including issues of bidder responsiveness, and on stop payment notice and lien laws, contract obligations and remedies, performance and payment bonds, issues concerning termination of contracts, etc., as well as on Contractors’ State License Law issues.
His areas of expertise include litigation, arbitration and mediation of disputes on public and private works involving construction defects, professional liability of architects and engineers, latent and patent defects in real property, strict products liability, extra work claims, changed conditions claims, delay, acceleration and disruption claims, defective work claims, mechanic’s liens and stop payment notice claims, prompt payment penalties, surety bond claims, bid protests, equipment failures, Uniform Commercial Code rights and remedies and issues regarding state and federal false claim laws.
Mr. Hamersmith has substantial experience advising contractors, designers and public agencies on a variety of public law matters, in addition to those summarized above. Advice regarding FOIA and California Public Records Act and issues related to same. Advice regarding application of state and local building codes and ordinances.
Advice regarding RFP’s for engineering and related services, and state laws pertaining to competitive procurement for same. Advice on conflict of interest laws and policies applicable to officials and employees. Advice on various dispute resolution alternatives including arbitration, mediation, required meetings of principals, dispute review boards, project neutrals, and other mid-contract mechanisms.
Advice on California local-agency dispute resolution statutes. Advice regarding insurance programs and coverages including general liability, professional errors and omissions, builder’s risk, owner’s protective professional indemnity, owner-controlled insurance wrap programs, etc.
Advice regarding DBE/MBE/WBE and equal employment opportunity laws, regulations, issues, and contract provisions. Advice regarding federal laws and regulations applicable to grantees of federal funding, including FTA third-party contracting guidelines, Buy America laws and regulations, Davis-Bacon, F.A.R. requirements on cost and pricing data, etc.
- J.D., University of Michigan, cum laude
- B.A., University of Illinois, Phi Beta Kappa
- U.S. District Court, Central District of California
- U.S. District Court, Southern District of California
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