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Construction disputes occur in both commercial and residential settings due to construction defects. Here's a quick guide to help you understand the most common ones.

Construction disputes in Arizona can occur for several reasons. While many disputes are resolved without going to litigation, issues certainly can arise between a construction company or contractor and a home or building owner. Construction disputes occur in both commercial and residential settings due to construction defects. Understanding the litigation process surrounding construction defects can help you make a better-informed decision as to your next steps.

Understanding Litigation Regarding Construction Disputes in Arizona

Prior to construction, builders and owners will enter into a contract, which will inform each part of their rights and responsibilities towards one another. After both parties enter into this agreement, the developer/builder/contractor will provide an outline of the services they will perform, the terms of those services and the specifics.  Most construction contracts contain mandatory mediation or arbitration provisions to resolve any disputes. These provisions are implemented to avoid the time and cost of litigation. Further, construction contracts will also contain warranties about the work provided.

If and when a construction defect is discovered, it can many times be resolved without having to turn to the courts. As mentioned above, arbitration and mediation are both ways to resolve issues in alternative forums. While both forums often involve lawyers, your case will not be heard before a judge and jury in a traditional sense. When these types of dispute resolution models fail or are waived, however, the parties in disagreement must have their disputes resolved in court.

Breach of Contract

The most common ground for a construction lawsuit is a breach of contract. Typically occurring after the build has been completed, the owner may discover defects in the design and or materials. Owners are often protected under the Contract or by statute and have the ability to contact the builder to correct these issues. Even after the repair occurs, the owner may still find the repair to be insufficient or to still have significant defects, which can lead to a legal claim and can result in litigation via the various routes described above.


Sheer negligence is another common reason for litigation regarding construction defects in Arizona. Broadly, negligence occurs when the contractor or builder’s work performed is below an acceptable standard of care. If the contractor’s negligence results in a loss to you economically or the inability for you to use the premises, you may have a viable legal claim regarding negligence or breach of contract. Please note, these claims are not mutually exclusive and may be brought together in the same lawsuit.

The Arizona Registrar of Contractors (ROC) is the regulatory body for contractors and construction providers. Under Arizona Statute 32-1143, there are clearly defined legalities and requirements that contractors and construction companies are required to meet. If you feel that you’re the victim of construction defects, breach of contract or breach of warranty, there are legal remedies provided to you under Arizona statute.

Experienced Construction Defect Lawyers In Arizona

Given the real estate boom and the demand for new construction, legal issues and problems surrounding construction have risen. Did you know that anticipating potential issues when drafting a construction contract can assist in preventing problems down the road? Everyone involved in a construction project should have legal counsel to help protect them from what may arise.

MacQueen & Gottlieb has significant experience with representing clients involved in complicated property and construction disputes. Some common construction litigation disputes that we have handled include contract disagreements, denial of site access, design deficiencies, inadequate inspections and structural failures.

Our Arizona construction litigation attorneys are prepared to vigorously represent your legal interests in any case involving construction disputes in Arizona whether it be through arbitration, mediation or trial. Contact us today at 602-562-7218 or make an appointment online.

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