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Image of Louis J. Blum, a partner at Finch, Thornton & Baird, LLP.

Louis J. Blum

Partner

Clients who value problem avoidance know to get Mr. Blum involved early in the process for his common sense and big-picture focus. This approach has made him a trusted advisor and earned the confidence and respect of firm clients. Simply put, what matters most to Louis Blum is “maximizing our clients’ success.”

(858) 737-3100, Ext. 3040

(858) 737-3101

Louis Blum is a trial-tested litigator and experienced advisor who works with construction project owners, general contractors, subcontractors, and insurers to help them achieve their business goals.  Manufacturing, technology, development, financial, and professional services businesses have also come to rely on the same practical legal counsel.  Mr. Blum emphasizes a proactive approach to dispute avoidance and resolution based on early positioning and negotiation.  His trial, arbitration, and appeal experience informs advice, gives credibility to negotiations, and provides leverage and horsepower when needed.

Clients who value problem avoidance know to get Mr. Blum involved early in the process for his common sense and big-picture focus.  This approach has made him a trusted advisor and earned the confidence and respect of firm clients.  Simply put, what matters most to Louis Blum is “maximizing our clients’ success.”

DELAY, INEFFICIENCY, AND EXTRA WORK CLAIMS

General contractors and subcontractors on private and public works regularly suffer the monetary and operational pains caused by scope disputes, extra work, delay, acceleration, and productivity issues.  With a focus on dispute avoidance and maximizing leverage, Mr. Blum knows the right questions to ask, the right information to obtain, and which legal strategies to deploy regardless of the state of the project.  This helps to ease client frustrations, contain disputes, and consistently achieve positive outcomes.

FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL PUBLIC WORKS CLAIMS

In the heavily regulated public works environment, early assessment of the most practical strategies for your unresolved project issues is critical — especially if you are hoping to avoid headaches and unnecessary expense.  Whether he is evaluating a possible request for equitable adjustment, submitting a claim, or preparing for aggressive litigation, Mr. Blum embraces and takes ownership of client problems.

CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS OF PUBLIC AND PRIVATE PROJECTS

Negotiation of key contract provisions requires advance knowledge of how language will be interpreted and used in litigation.  Mr. Blum has unique construction experience that allows him to strategically negotiate prime contracts for any type of public or private delivery method, including cost-plus, lease-leaseback, construction management, and design-build, as well as subcontracts for any type of project or trade.  Mr. Blum emphasizes efficient, practical advice on contract negotiation at every level.

CLAIM AND CLOSE-OUT NEGOTIATIONS ON PUBLIC AND PRIVATE PROJECTS

Navigating contractual dispute resolution, Public Contract Code and Government Code requirements, and evaluating the timing of claim submissions and strategy for resolution opportunities is vital to limiting cost overruns and project losses.  Years of experience in managing these problems provide Mr. Blum’s clients with the unique opportunity to resolve claims early or to properly set the stage for litigation when necessary.

COLLECTIONS: LIENS, STOP PAYMENT NOTICES, AND BOND CLAIMS

Avoiding mistakes and proper timing are vital in pursuing all available remedies for recovery of money owed on a construction project, whether the claim is disputed or undisputed.  Mr. Blum has worked on such matters on a daily basis and that translates to immediate, experienced advice.  He and the firm strive to deliver maximum net monetary benefits to our clients at every engagement.

BUSINESS AND COMMERCIAL LITIGATION

In addition to Mr. Blum’s construction clientele, his litigation experience is often called upon by general businesses including manufacturing, technology, development, financial, and professional services companies.  This work involves business issues ranging from contract disputes including license, payment, and lease issues; partnership and ownership issues; and creditor claims and defense.  Always leading with common sense and an appreciation for maximizing return on investment, Mr. Blum is adept in bringing resolution and closure to most matters without the need for costly, time-consuming litigation.

INSURANCE COVERAGE

For general contractors, subcontractors, and other businesses facing coverage disputes caused by insurance carriers unwilling to pay or defend claims, Mr. Blum brings an abundance of practical expertise to the firm’s representation of insurance claims and defense matters.  His litigation skills and our aggressive approach tilt the playing field in your favor.  If you are receptive to legal strategies that could result in someone else paying your insurance bills, then it may be worth a phone call to Louis Blum.

COURSE-OF-PERFORMANCE COUNSEL

Large or experienced general contractors or subcontractors understand the value that comes from working with an experienced legal partner throughout the life of a project.  That Mr. Blum is so knowledgeable about construction company operations and industry practices make him ideally suited for this trusted role.  Moreover, the economic benefits of a project counsel relationship usually quell the concerns of cost-minded clients.

  • Construction litigation
  • Public works of improvement and government contracts, including projects with local public agencies, cities, counties, state agencies, and federal government
  • Delay, inefficiency, and extra work claims
  • Coordination with schedule, design, accounting, and subject matter experts on construction claims
  • Contract defaults
  • Surety obligations
  • Mechanic’s liens
  • Stop payment notices
  • Payment bond claims
  • Performance bond claims
  • Requests for equitable adjustments (REAs)
  • Contract Disputes Act claims
  • Miller Act claims
  • Counsel on specialized delivery methods, including lease-leaseback and construction management at-risk projects
  • Transactional matters specializing in the drafting and review of construction project agreements and public procurement compliance
  • Local, state, and federal bid protests
  • General business litigation
  • Insurance litigation and coverage

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT OF $7.35 MILLION FROM A LOCAL SCHOOL district on behalf of a wrongfully terminated general contractor, concurrent with resolution of over $10 million in surety and other creditor claims against the general contractor for less than the settlement amount.

OBTAINED A $7.3 MILLION DOLLAR JUDGMENT on behalf of a general contractor, after a two-week federal jury trial, for claims arising from the contractor’s fraudulently induced acquisition of a construction materials business.

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT OF APPROXIMATELY $1.5 MILLION from Caltrans, nearly the entire initial claim amount, for a general contractor, for costs arising from unforeseen conditions and delay.

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT IN EXCESS OF $9 MILLION from various contractors and design consultants, on behalf of a municipal owner of an affordable housing development, for damages arising from defective design and construction.

OBTAINED A DEFENSE JUDGMENT, AFTER BENCH TRIAL, for defendant general contractor on a claim for prompt payment violations arising from the general contractor’s withholding of funds based on the owner’s prevailing wage audits.

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT SEVERAL TIMES ECONOMIC DAMAGES from a title insurance carrier, on behalf of policy owners wrongfully refused a defense against their neighbor’s claim of easement.

OBTAINED JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF BUILDING OWNER, AFTER JURY TRIAL, for damages caused by faulty grading.

Louis Blum is a trial-tested litigator and experienced advisor who works with construction project owners, general contractors, subcontractors, and insurers to help them achieve their business goals.  Manufacturing, technology, development, financial, and professional services businesses have also come to rely on the same practical legal counsel.  Mr. Blum emphasizes a proactive approach to dispute avoidance and resolution based on early positioning and negotiation.  His trial, arbitration, and appeal experience informs advice, gives credibility to negotiations, and provides leverage and horsepower when needed.

Clients who value problem avoidance know to get Mr. Blum involved early in the process for his common sense and big-picture focus.  This approach has made him a trusted advisor and earned the confidence and respect of firm clients.  Simply put, what matters most to Louis Blum is “maximizing our clients’ success.”

DELAY, INEFFICIENCY, AND EXTRA WORK CLAIMS

General contractors and subcontractors on private and public works regularly suffer the monetary and operational pains caused by scope disputes, extra work, delay, acceleration, and productivity issues.  With a focus on dispute avoidance and maximizing leverage, Mr. Blum knows the right questions to ask, the right information to obtain, and which legal strategies to deploy regardless of the state of the project.  This helps to ease client frustrations, contain disputes, and consistently achieve positive outcomes.

FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL PUBLIC WORKS CLAIMS

In the heavily regulated public works environment, early assessment of the most practical strategies for your unresolved project issues is critical — especially if you are hoping to avoid headaches and unnecessary expense.  Whether he is evaluating a possible request for equitable adjustment, submitting a claim, or preparing for aggressive litigation, Mr. Blum embraces and takes ownership of client problems.

CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS OF PUBLIC AND PRIVATE PROJECTS

Negotiation of key contract provisions requires advance knowledge of how language will be interpreted and used in litigation.  Mr. Blum has unique construction experience that allows him to strategically negotiate prime contracts for any type of public or private delivery method, including cost-plus, lease-leaseback, construction management, and design-build, as well as subcontracts for any type of project or trade.  Mr. Blum emphasizes efficient, practical advice on contract negotiation at every level.

CLAIM AND CLOSE-OUT NEGOTIATIONS ON PUBLIC AND PRIVATE PROJECTS

Navigating contractual dispute resolution, Public Contract Code and Government Code requirements, and evaluating the timing of claim submissions and strategy for resolution opportunities is vital to limiting cost overruns and project losses.  Years of experience in managing these problems provide Mr. Blum’s clients with the unique opportunity to resolve claims early or to properly set the stage for litigation when necessary.

COLLECTIONS: LIENS, STOP PAYMENT NOTICES, AND BOND CLAIMS

Avoiding mistakes and proper timing are vital in pursuing all available remedies for recovery of money owed on a construction project, whether the claim is disputed or undisputed.  Mr. Blum has worked on such matters on a daily basis and that translates to immediate, experienced advice.  He and the firm strive to deliver maximum net monetary benefits to our clients at every engagement.

BUSINESS AND COMMERCIAL LITIGATION

In addition to Mr. Blum’s construction clientele, his litigation experience is often called upon by general businesses including manufacturing, technology, development, financial, and professional services companies.  This work involves business issues ranging from contract disputes including license, payment, and lease issues; partnership and ownership issues; and creditor claims and defense.  Always leading with common sense and an appreciation for maximizing return on investment, Mr. Blum is adept in bringing resolution and closure to most matters without the need for costly, time-consuming litigation.

INSURANCE COVERAGE

For general contractors, subcontractors, and other businesses facing coverage disputes caused by insurance carriers unwilling to pay or defend claims, Mr. Blum brings an abundance of practical expertise to the firm’s representation of insurance claims and defense matters.  His litigation skills and our aggressive approach tilt the playing field in your favor.  If you are receptive to legal strategies that could result in someone else paying your insurance bills, then it may be worth a phone call to Louis Blum.

COURSE-OF-PERFORMANCE COUNSEL

Large or experienced general contractors or subcontractors understand the value that comes from working with an experienced legal partner throughout the life of a project.  That Mr. Blum is so knowledgeable about construction company operations and industry practices make him ideally suited for this trusted role.  Moreover, the economic benefits of a project counsel relationship usually quell the concerns of cost-minded clients.

  • Construction litigation
  • Public works of improvement and government contracts, including projects with local public agencies, cities, counties, state agencies, and federal government
  • Delay, inefficiency, and extra work claims
  • Coordination with schedule, design, accounting, and subject matter experts on construction claims
  • Contract defaults
  • Surety obligations
  • Mechanic’s liens
  • Stop payment notices
  • Payment bond claims
  • Performance bond claims
  • Requests for equitable adjustments (REAs)
  • Contract Disputes Act claims
  • Miller Act claims
  • Counsel on specialized delivery methods, including lease-leaseback and construction management at-risk projects
  • Transactional matters specializing in the drafting and review of construction project agreements and public procurement compliance
  • Local, state, and federal bid protests
  • General business litigation
  • Insurance litigation and coverage

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT OF $7.35 MILLION FROM A LOCAL SCHOOL district on behalf of a wrongfully terminated general contractor, concurrent with resolution of over $10 million in surety and other creditor claims against the general contractor for less than the settlement amount.

OBTAINED A $7.3 MILLION DOLLAR JUDGMENT on behalf of a general contractor, after a two-week federal jury trial, for claims arising from the contractor’s fraudulently induced acquisition of a construction materials business.

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT OF APPROXIMATELY $1.5 MILLION from Caltrans, nearly the entire initial claim amount, for a general contractor, for costs arising from unforeseen conditions and delay.

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT IN EXCESS OF $9 MILLION from various contractors and design consultants, on behalf of a municipal owner of an affordable housing development, for damages arising from defective design and construction.

OBTAINED A DEFENSE JUDGMENT, AFTER BENCH TRIAL, for defendant general contractor on a claim for prompt payment violations arising from the general contractor’s withholding of funds based on the owner’s prevailing wage audits.

OBTAINED A SETTLEMENT SEVERAL TIMES ECONOMIC DAMAGES from a title insurance carrier, on behalf of policy owners wrongfully refused a defense against their neighbor’s claim of easement.

OBTAINED JUDGMENT IN FAVOR OF BUILDING OWNER, AFTER JURY TRIAL, for damages caused by faulty grading.

Clients who value problem avoidance know to get Mr. Blum involved early in the process for his common sense and big-picture focus. This approach has made him a trusted advisor and earned the confidence and respect of firm clients. Simply put, what matters most to Louis Blum is “maximizing our clients’ success.”

(858) 737-3100, Ext. 3040

(858) 737-3101

Stacy M. Torres
  • Construction Law
    • Claims & Disputes
    • Local Agency, Municipal & State Contracts
    • Federal Procurement & Claims
    • Project Counsel
    • Prime Contracts & Subcontracts
    • Collections
  • Business & Commercial Litigation
  • Insurance Coverage
  • California: State Courts
  • U.S. District Courts of California: Central, Southern
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • University of San Diego School of Law, J.D., cum laude
    • Order of the Coif
    • Law Review; his comment “Mixed Signals: Comparative Analysis in Constitutional Adjudication” published in Volume 39, Winter 2002 edition
    • CALI (AmJur) Award for the highest achievement in Products Liability and Pre-Trial Practice
  • Washington University, St. Louis, B.A., Economics
  • State Bar of California
  • San Diego County Bar Association
  • Board of Directors, San Diego County Taxpayers Association
  • San Diego Super Lawyer for Construction Litigation by Super Lawyers Magazine in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018
  • 2015 San Diego Rising Star for Construction Litigation as published by Super Lawyers Magazine

Mr. Blum is an accomplished public speaker and regularly addresses the construction community on a range of training and educational topics, including:

How To Prove And Recover Your Losses: Change Orders And Claims

Latest Trends For Recovery Of Lost Productivity And Delay Claims

Image Promoting Louis Blum And Denny Lee Seminar Titled Change Orders & Claims: How To Prove And Recover Your Losses To Be Presented On August 1, 2018.
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