Andrew S. “Andy” Harris

Andrew S. “Andy” Harris

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Trial Lawyer in Austin, TX, Construction, Litigation & Commercial Real Estate

An Austin-based litigator within the firm’s construction law practice group, Andy’s practice focuses on advocating for general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, sureties, and owners on a variety of construction related issues including contract disputes, payment disputes, performance and delay claims, construction or design defect claims, lien claims, bond claims, and termination issues.  He represents clients in all segments of private construction, including retail, industrial, multi-family, medical, office, hotels, and energy facilities. Andy also represents clients on public projects, such as highways, schools, hospitals, military installations, public works facilities, and universities.

Board Certified in Construction Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, Andy Harris handles contract drafting and negotiations, with experience negotiating prime contracts, subcontracts, lender agreements, residential contracts, and purchase agreements. He has experience resolving matters for clients through negotiation, litigation, mediation, and arbitration in state courts, federal courts, private or administered arbitrations, federal claims proceedings, and administrative hearings.

A seasoned, first-chair trial lawyer, Andy’s legal acumen is complemented by previous field experience with a general contractor, where he managed numerous projects throughout the Midwest and Texas.

Andy is also the co-founder and a current board member of RBI Austin, a 501(c)(3) which supports nearly 1,400 at-risk children and teens in East Austin athletically, academically and spiritually.

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Areas of Practice

  • Construction Law
  • Litigation
  • Commercial Real Estate

Bar and Court Admissions

  • Texas
  • Florida
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas

Education

Stetson University College of Law, Gulfport, Florida

  • J.D. (magna cum laude) – 2013
  • Stetson Law Review
  • Moot Court Board
  • Honors Program
  • National Champion – 63rd Annual National Moot Court Competition

University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut

  • B.A. – 2003
  • Varsity Baseball
  • Scholar Athlete

Certified Legal Specialties

Board Certified in Construction Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization

Representative Experience

  • Assisted in the representation of owner, general contractor and subcontractor clients on a variety of different matters including breach of contract claims, settlement negotiations, lien removal, and debt collections
  • First-chair trial experience in real property litigation, including landlord-tenant issues and contested property divisions
  • Obtained summary take nothing judgment on behalf of general contractor client in lawsuit over payment dispute
  • Resolved payment lawsuit by a pool subcontractor against general contractor in which client successfully paid nothing to defaulting subcontractor
  • Favorably resolved a lawsuit alleging client violated a non-compete clause
  • Represented various clients by drafting and negotiating lease documents and supporting addendums.
  • Successfully recovered payment for design work performed by client in construction of medical facilities
  • Defended out-of-state builder against improper permitting and defects claims on new construction
  • Negotiated favorable construction timeline for client to ensure smooth occupancy transition for business
  • Successfully terminated commercial lease for business owner and landlord when tenant violated city and county code and lease terms
  • Favorable resolved payment dispute for works performed by subcontractor in large commercial development
  • Advised multiple national highway contractors on Texas road projects and TxDot issues
  • Successfully litigated $23MM in defect and delay claims against subcontractor on high-rise construction project
  • Favorably resolved defect and improper lien claims against contractor on behalf of national hotel owner
  • Defended and resolved construction defect claims against general contractor client related to work on a large commercial airport project
  • Obtained payment for various subcontractors and suppliers pursuing lien claims and payment claims on projects throughout Texas
  • Successfully recovered payment for contractor client in a lawsuit related to a ground up commercial project
  • Successfully appealed and overturned judgement against client involved in a lease dispute
  • Successfully resolved arbitration proceeding related to payment dispute between contractor and subcontractor on a 6,000-acre solar installation

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • State Bar of Texas – Construction Law Section; Young Construction Lawyer Representative and Committee Chairperson 2020-2022
  • Austin Bar Association – Construction Law Section; Leadership Academy, 2015
  • RBI Austin – Board of Advisors
  • Austin Young Lawyers Association
  • Texas Trial Lawyers Association
  • Capital Area Trial Lawyers Association
  • The Associated General Contractors of America – Austin Chapter
  • AGC Construction Leadership Council
  • Associated Builders and Contractors – Central Texas Chapter
  • Greater Austin Contractors & Engineers Association
  • American Bar Association – Forum on the Construction Industry
  • Central Texas Future Leadership Council

Speeches and Publications

  • “Legal Concerns Related to Material Price Escalation,” Austin Bar Association Construction Section, May 2022
  • “Responsibility for Design Defects,” Associated General Contractors of America – Austin, May 2022
  • “Who is Covering the Legal Fees,” AM Monthly Law Alert, April 2022
  • “Bonds and Liens on Construction Work in Texas”, AGC Construction Association (co-author)
  • “Vacatur or Confirmation of Arbitral Awards Following Untimely Issuance,” (co-author), Construction Law Section of the State Bar of Texas, Construction Law Journal, Winter 2021
  • Presiding Officer – State Bar of Texas Construction Law Section, Basic Course in Construction Law, December 2021
  • “Legislative Update 2021,” American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and A/C Engineers, November 2021
  • “Litigation in Work Zones,” AGC of Texas Fall Safety Conference, October 2021
  • “Contractor Defaults,” Surety Association of South Texas, September 2021
  • “Updates to Texas Lien Laws,” CFMA Central Texas, August 2021
  • “New Changes in LLC Litigation and Recovery of Legal Fees,” AM Monthly Law Alert, July 2021
  • “Material Price Escalation,” Central Texas Associated Builders & Contractors, July 2021
  • “Texas Mechanic’s Liens and Payment Bonds,” Associated General Contractors of America – Austin, June 2021
  • “Performance of Public Contracts,” AGC of Texas Prime Time Curriculum, February 2021
  • Presiding Officer – State Bar of Texas Construction Law Section, Basic Course in Construction Law, December 2020
  • Is it Finally Time for Lien Law Reform?” AM Monthly Law Alert, September 2020
  • CISA Updates Guidance on Essential Construction Work,” AM Law Alert, April 2020
  • (Contributing Author) Recent Court Opinions Concerning Construction Law, The Change Order, State Bar of Texas Construction Law Section, March 2020
  • “What the Heck? Contingent Payment Enforceability,” State Bar of Texas, Construction Law Section, Construction Law Conference, March 2020
  • The Future is Smart Contracts,” AM Monthly Law Alert, February 2020
  • “Legislative Update 2019” American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers, December 2019
  • Heard ‘a Purdah? Witness Communication in Arbitration,” AM Monthly Law Alert, November 2019
  • “Killer Contract Clauses,” CFMA Lone Star Conference, September 2019
  • “Contractor Defaults: Observations on the Construction Industry,” Surety Association of South Texas, July 2019
  • “Legal Contracting Issues,” AGC North Central Texas Chapter, April 2019
  • (Contributing Author) Recent Court Opinions Concerning Construction Law, The Change Order, State Bar of Texas Construction Law Section, March 2019
  • “An Introduction to Texas Construction Law,” State Bar of Texas Construction Law Section, Basic Course in Construction Law, December 2018
  • Rethinking Arbitration Clauses in Condo Construction,” AM Monthly Law Alert, September 2018
  • “Can I Say That? Defamation and Tortious Interferences Issues for Attorneys,” (co-author), State Bar of Texas Construction Law Conference, March 2018
  • “Legislative Update 2017,” American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, 2017
  • Be Careful Out There: Bad Trends in Oilfield MSA Indemnity Clauses,” AM Monthly Law Alert, November 2017
  • “Keeping Austin ‘Solar-Ready,'” AM Monthly Law Alert, April 2017
  • New Austin Regulations on Employment Applications,” (Co-Author), AM Monthly Law Alert, October 2016
  • Austin Imposes New Construction Recycling Ban,” AM Monthly Law Alert, August 2016
  • Enforceability of Contractual Liquidated Damages Penalties,” AM Monthly Law Alert, July 2016
  • “Enforceability of Contractual Fines/Penalties for Subcontractor Safety Violations,” (Co-Author), Mechanical Contractors Association of America, Management Methods Manual, 2016

Professional Recognition

  • The Best Lawyers in America’s, “Ones to Watch” in Commercial Litigation, Litigation – Construction and Litigation – Real Estate, since 2021