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The Fundamentals of Construction Contracts: Understanding the Issues

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What you don’t know can hurt you … stay updated on construction law and make your next project hassle-free. This program will provide you with insight and practical advice needed to address and overcome some of the common problems encountered on many construction projects. The faculty will address issues that arise before the beginning of the project and during construction, including the rights and remedies available. We will equip you with the essential information to recognize the steps that are necessary to avoid major disputes and to deal with problems as they arise. You’ll learn to:
• Navigate contract forms and clauses
• Explore forms of project delivery methods
• Understand the distinction between bonds and insurance
• Master the filing requirements of mechanics’ liens
• Interpret recent changes to Florida’s lien law

Lecturer Bios

Alexander E. Barthet, Esq.

Alexander E. Barthet, Esq., directs the Construction Law Group at The Barthet Firm, a ten-lawyer practice holding the highest recommendation from the country’s leading legal directory. He received his B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from Renssealer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, the oldest engineering university in the nation. He obtained his J.D. degree, with honors, from the University of Miami School of Law and is admitted to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in Washington, D.C., the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida and Florida’s state courts. Mr. Barthet has lectured on many of the intricacies of Florida’s lien laws, including notices of commencements; notices to owner; claims of lien; sworn statements of account; contractors’ final affidavits; and proper and improper use of 713.23, 713.245 and 255.05 bonds. He has been published in The Construction Lawyer: American Bar Association Journal of the Forum on the Construction Industry and in Building Florida, the monthly magazine for associated builders and contractors.

Elissa Gainsburg, Esq.

Elissa Gainsburg, Esq., is a partner at the law firm of Pardo & Gainsburg, LLP. She represents developers and contractors in litigation and pre-litigation negotiations both inside and outside the state of Florida. Ms. Gainsburg has handled complex construction litigation matters, contract negotiation, and regulatory and licensing issues for various public and private developers and contractors, as well as governmental municipalities. She received her B.B.A. and J.D. degrees from Hofstra University in New York. Ms. Gainsburg is a member of the Dade County, Florida, Federal and New York bar associations, as well as the bar for the Supreme Court of the United States. Ms. Gainsburg has co-authored many articles and regularly speaks at numerous seminars throughout the state of Florida. She is presently the vice president of the Miami chapter of the National Association of Women in Construction. Ms. Gainsburg can be reached at

Michael J. Kurzman, Esq.

Michael J. Kurzman, Esq., is a shareholder with the law firm of Siegfried, Rivera, Lerner, De La Torre & Sobel, P.A. He is board certified by The Florida Bar and practices construction law. The firm concentrates its practice in construction law, real estate and condominium law. The construction law portion of the firm represents general contractors, subcontractors and/or owners in civil litigation disputes, arbitrations, mediations and contract negotiations. Mr. Kurzman was formerly a shareholder in Elder, Kurzman & Vaccarella, P.A., where he practiced in the area of construction litigation, construction defect claims, construction delay claims, construction contract claims, construction lien law and surety law for 14 years. He continues his practice in these areas with the law firm of Siegfried, Rivera, Lerner, De La Torre & Sobel, P.A., since January 2004. He has lectured before various professional groups and has written outlines on construction-related matters for various publications. Mr. Kurzman received his B.A. degree from the University of Florida and his J.D. degree, cum laude, from the University of Miami. He was admitted to the Florida bar in 1989 and the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida in 1992.

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