Insight Center: Events

Pepper Hamilton Attorneys Presenting at Construction SuperConference 2013

Speakers: Bruce W. Ficken, Ralph A. Finizio, Richard W. Foltz Jr., James D. Hollyday, Joseph T. Imperiale, Thomas J. Madigan and Ira M. Schulman


Pepper Hamilton is a sponsor of The Construction SuperConference, now in its 28th year, being held on December 11-13, in San Francisco, CA. The conference is recognized as the preeminent construction conference developed for mid- to senior-level professionals who work in any of the legal and commercial construction markets. Impactful plenary sessions and compelling panel discussions from top legal, consulting, and leaders of construction companies bring to the forefront challenging issues and new insights into the legal, business, and economic challenges and opportunities in today’s construction industry.

Pepper attorneys will be presenting on these panels at the conference:

Thursday, December 12, 2013 | 9:30-10:45 AM
Ethics of Predictive Coding and the Future of Preserving, Finding, and Presenting Construction Project Data at Trial

Joseph T. Imperiale, Esq., Pepper Hamilton LLP
This session will focus on the use of predictive coding to find relevant electronic documents in construction cases and will discuss the ethical issues surrounding the electronic exchange, collaboration, and storage of project data, and real-time monitoring and preservation of events. These topics will likely make the challenges of recreating what really happened on a project, including as-built drawings, relics of the past. The panelists will also explore the issues, including viability and acceptability, of computer-assisted (think algorithms) predictive coding for electronic document searches. Finally, they will examine how these and other technological changes will impact project data presentation in trials in the future.


Thursday, December 12, 2013 | 9:30-10:45 AM
The Fog of Failures; Understanding and Explaining Complex Engineering

James D. Hollyday, partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP

When building structures perform poorly or collapse, or when significant construction defects are discovered, there is often a rush to identify the source of the problem and the responsible party. These initial assessments are often biased and incomplete, and can be wrong. An attorney representing an involved party often faces an uphill battle to cut through the fog of confusion created by the many voices rendering opinions, and establish the true causes of the problems and an appropriate remedy or "fix." Often, the resolution of these issues turns upon structural engineering analysis. Legal teams benefit from the advice of panelists with extensive experience as members of design and construction teams for building projects, who can identify causes and develop appropriate remedies, and communicate the complex concepts underlying their analysis in a clear and understandable way. A panel including structural engineering experts, a construction litigator, and a jury consultant will discuss actual or hypothetical cases and strategies for evaluating and identifying the root causes of construction problems and communicating complex concepts to the finder of fact.

Thursday, December 12, 2013 | 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Advocacy in Construction Disputes

Ira M. Schulman, partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP (Moderator)
Bruce W. Ficken, partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP

As lawyer, or client, or consultant, we all know the importance of gathering the facts. How we use those facts is more often than not the difference between winning or losing in the very costly exercise of litigation. Nowhere is this more apt than in the trial of a construction dispute. In this first-ever advanced skills session at the Construction Superconference, a panel of experienced trial lawyers, with literally a century of collective trial experience, will address the central skill that defines those who try construction cases: advocacy in construction disputes. Advocacy will be discussed in the context of voir dire, openings, direct and cross-examination and closings. In addition, the panel will present best practices in trying issues that recur in construction litigation. This promises to be an insightful and fun program for professionals at all levels.

Thursday, December 12, 2013 | 2:15-3:30 PM
Mediation: The Cure-All for Construction Disputes—What Could Go Wrong?

Richard W. Foltz, Jr., partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP
Ralph A. Finizio, partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP
Thomas J. Madigan, partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP

Mediation has been touted as the cure-all for construction disputes. What could be better than a negotiated settlement, acceptable to all parties, achieved early in the dispute, at a fraction of the cost of litigation or arbitration? But there are a number of ways mediation can not only fail to achieve a settlement, but also drive the parties farther apart. This program will explore not only the success stories, but scenarios when mediation can do more harm than good.

The Construction SuperConference is co-sponsored by the Construction Litigation Section of the American Bar Association, American General Contractors of America (AGC of America), and the American Transportation and Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA).

For more information, visit http://www.constructionsuperconference.com/.