The Choice Is Yours – Or Is It? Anti-Choice-of-Laws Statutes Applicable to Construction Contracts

Business woman pointing to where to sign

The choice of law applicable to the contract is often overlooked.

October 3, 2022
Tiffany Raush & Tanya McGill - ConsensusDocs

During contract negotiations and review, the parties make choices about what risks they are willing to accept and at what cost. But one often overlooked choice—the choice of law applicable to the contract—can undermine carefully negotiated construction contracts and expose contractors to risks they never intended to accept.

Choice-of-law provisions are standard provisions in most contracts. These provisions allow the parties to the contract to decide which state’s laws will apply to their contract. Often, choice-of-law in the construction contract is the law of the state where the project is located and there will be no issue. But, if the project is located in an unfamiliar, the owner or prime contractor may prefer the laws of the state where the owner or prime contractor is primarily located over the laws of the state where the project is located.

Generally, most states will enforce the parties’ choice of law in a contract. But that may not be the case for construction contracts. States like Texas, California, New York, Florida, Louisiana, and others may prohibit parties from agreeing to the application of another state’s law for construction projects in their states.

Reprinted courtesy of Tiffany Raush, Jones Walker LLP (ConsensusDocs) and Tanya McGill, University of Mississippi School of Law Student, 2023 Graduate (ConsensusDocs)
Ms. Raush may be contacted at traush@joneswalker.com



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