How to deal with Zoning Conflict

Dealing with different types of Zoning

No matter where you live, sooner or later a question about property lines si going to come up. Who’s right and who’s wrong? This land is mine and so on. There are several ways to handle these arguments but first you must know about the Zoning Ordinances, Zoning regulations, and the desired property use.

First we’ll start with Nonconforming Use. This is when there is a conflict between existing property use and new zoning laws. There are two ways that a use may be nonconforming, the first is when the nature or a characteristic of a building doesn’t meet zoning laws. The second is the activity going on in the building does not conform to the law.

An example would be if you were using a factory in a residential area. The nonconforming use can be limited by time. After that specific time is up the property must be converted to conforming use or sometimes destroyed.

Another variation of Zoning is Conditional Use. Conditional Use  is when use is allowed by a zoning law, but is subject to certain conditions. For example, a rural/residential are might allow a professional office in the zone if they offer off street parking.

Quite often it  requires an approval and confirmation of a conditional use by the zoning laws. The owner would need to follow the application and the approval process with a zoning board and/or the officials.

Variances is another form of common conflict with Zoning. Variances is when a special use permit is an exception to zoning ordinance requirements. Usually you must show some kind of hardship to justify the variance.  Such as when an odd shaped lot messes with the requirements and you can not meet the requirements when building a home.

Spot Zoning  is when the local land use plans and zoning ordinances contain restrictions on land uses in specific areas outlined in the plan or ordinance. After the local government decides on a zoning plan then the property owners can seek exceptions to the requirements.  The owner can either amend the plan or the ordinance or apply for a variance or special use permit.

Every property is different and you may have several options when it comes to finding a solution for your zoning problem. A zoning  or land use lawyer can help you find a solution for your zoning problems.

DiJulio Law Group

Construction Claims: Cost Overruns and Delay Claims

Construction contract bidding is a complex process

Contract bidding is a complex process that requires owners and contractors to provide detailed information about a project. It is necessary in order to reasonably estimate the costs associated with building projects. Though detailed information and careful consideration may have been involved in the bidding process, inevitable changes made after contracts have been signed can result in significant differences between project bids and project costs.

Circumstances unforeseen prior to the start of a project can have significant negative financial impact on contractors, sub-contractors, and owners. At the DiJulio Law Group, we have an in-depth understanding of complex issues associated with documenting, proving and recovering the costs associated with changes to a contractor’s performance resulting from a variety of factors.

Construction cost overruns

Most construction projects benefit from a modicum of planning, but circumstances occur that cause some projects to go astray which make cost overruns inevitable. Contractors and sub-contractors must stay ahead of the project by acknowledging problems immediately and providing solutions. Informing owners is in the best interests of contractors as well.

A useful process in cost management of a project is to compare the budgeted/estimated project compares with the completed actual project. Reasons for cost overruns can quickly be determined by this method. Once the project is completely finished, and the project costs are paid, a project completion meeting with significant individuals of the project team to discuss what went right and what went wrong is highly recommended.

Our experience includes all types of construction cost overrun claims, such as impact and delay claims, changed conditions or differing site conditions claims, and defective specification claims. We use an well informed, in depth approach in resolving our clients’ disputes.

Construction delay claims

As a construction delays can create major problems and become very costly, the schedule is a critical part of any construction project. Careful scheduling can help protect the interests of contractors and property owners, but there may be unforeseen circumstances or events that give rise to construction delay issues.

These delay issues may cause any number of construction disputes. Effectively managing these disputes often requires seasoned legal judgment. Such judgment comes as a result of having protected the interests of contractors, sub-contractors, and owners with respect to a wide variety of delay-related issue such as weather, concurrent, or owner-caused delays.

DiJulio Law Group

Mediation of Construction Disputes

Mediation, An Alternative to Litigation and Arbitration

Mediation is an increasingly popular process for resolution of construction disputes for a variety of reasons. Resolving construction disputes with the usual methods of litigation and arbitration can prove costly in terms of time, money and emotional stress. Mediation provides an alternative for contractors, owners, developers, design professionals, and others who are dissatisfied with arbitration or litigation process as a means to resolve their construction disputes. In addition, experience has proven to many individuals that arbitration is not always a low-cost alternative to litigation in dispute resolution.

The process of mediation is one in which the mediator opens avenues of communication between the disputing parties. The mediator, without deciding the issues or imposing a solution on the parties, facilitates an understanding which allows the parties to reach a mutually agreeable resolution to their dispute. The mediator seeks to help the parties to reach an acceptable resolution based on their own ideas of what that resolution should be. A mediator does not pass judgment and so will not render an opinion as to the proper legal result of a particular dispute.

Mediation may be used in resolution of claims or conflicts between disputing parties at any point of the claim process. It can occur prior to the filing of a more formal court or arbitration process or prior to trial. Mediation allows for minimization of legal costs, a gain in control in the decision-making process, and a reduction of emotional stress. Business relationships suffer less damage because mediation provides the most rapid process for full and final resolution of disputes.

Mediation offers the possibility of a quick resolution

Disputes quite often have a negative impact on timely project completion, in addition to negative financial impact when costs accrue on a daily basis. The extensive legal preparation necessary for successful litigation tends to lead parties down a path that may not prove to be the most advantageous approach. Mediation gives disputing parties a voice in the process and also presents the possibility of a quick resolution, unlike waiting for court dates. If you find yourself in a construction dispute, mediation offers you and the other party, with or without your lawyers present, the opportunity to find solutions for problems more quickly than would happen in the courts or arbitration. In a fraction of the time and expense of litigation, mediation allows you and the other party with the help of an impartial mediator to gain control in the outcome and obtain a fair solution to your construction dispute.

DiJulio Law Group