The Construction Group at Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP provides legal advice and counsel to clients in connection with various aspects of the construction process, including negotiation and preparation of construction, construction management, project management and design professional contracts, mechanic’s lien filings and discharges, and dispute resolution relating to construction matters. The group is led by partner John Casolaro, B.C.E. and former chair of the New York City Bar Association Construction Law Committee. Group members include attorneys from the firm’s real estate and litigation departments and the environmental practice group. Our attorneys have experience with a variety construction related areas such as leasing, environmental/hazardous materials matters, litigation/dispute resolution, zoning/land use, and administrative law.


Our attorneys have extensive experience representing major owners of New York City and suburban commercial buildings in connection with the development of various forms of agreement used in the development, construction, modernization and maintenance of properties. We have worked closely with in-house staff of owners to develop forms for use by staff portfolio-wide, and to create customized forms for particular projects. Our attorneys are completely familiar with development of general and special conditions and interpretation of technical specifications relating to construction. Our areas of expertise include:

  • Design Professional Contracts

Agreements relating to services provided by architects, engineers, environmental consultants, owner’s representatives, etc.

  • Construction Contracts

Agreements relating to work performed by contractors, subcontractors, construction managers. We utilize both the American Institute of Architect (AIA®) contract documents and our own specialized contract forms and riders to meet our clients’ needs.

  • Project Management Contracts

Agreements relating to services provided by project managers.

  • Service Agreements

Agreements for maintenance and service of elevators, fire alarms, roof water tanks, security systems, fire protection plan updates, cleaning contracts, etc.

  • Environmental Remediation Agreements

Agreements relating to abatement of asbestos and lead, leaking underground storage tanks (UST), soil remediation, etc.

  • Construction Related Agreements

Ancillary agreements relating to construction, such as pre-construction access agreements, party-wall agreements, lot-line improvement access agreements, agreements for access to perform underpinning, etc.

Mechanics Liens

Our attorneys have represented parties filing mechanic’s liens as well as owners wishing to discharge mechanic’s liens, either through bonding or through summary discharge under the New York Lien Law.

Dispute Resolution

Our attorneys have experience representing owners and contractors in construction disputes at early stages (as part of the change order process), and in litigation and arbitration. 

Green Buildings & Sustainable Development

Our attorneys have assisted owners in preparing and negotiating construction and design professional contracts for new projects and retro-fitting projects seeking certification under the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® green building certification program.

Other Areas

Carter Ledyard & Milburn has also handled mergers and acquisitions of construction companies and related businesses.

Representative Matters

  • Representation of building owners who declared a contractor default and took over completion of the contractor’s work. 
  • Representation of a building owner who called upon a surety to complete construction work after the contractor was declared in default including negotiation of a completion agreement and handling of attendant mechanic’s lien filings. 
  • Representation of a commercial building owner in the removal by court orders and through negotiation of dozens of mechanic’s liens filed after a major tenant default.
  • Representation of a commercial building owner who put in place a $50 million portfolio-wide, multi-year cleaning and maintenance contract, including preparation of bid specifications and other bid documents, and preparation and negotiation of the contract.
  • Counsel a commercial building owner in its purchase of electrical power for its entire portfolio of buildings.
  • Representation of a commercial building owner in discussions with the NYC Department of Environmental Protection relating to leaking underground storage tank and contamination of soils under the City sidewalk and street, including negotiation of soil clean-up and a monitoring plan.
  • Representation of an owner undertaking extensive modernization and upgrade of its commercial building, including new electrical, HVAC and related mechanical systems as well as new elevators and conversion of elevator shafts to mechanical equipment shafts, including preparation, negotiation and coordination of multiple contracts. 
  • Representation of building owner whose building suffered settlement and damage due to excavation conducted for a new building on adjacent property.

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