In the construction business, every action has a domino effect. If trouble develops in one part of the job, the entire project suffers. A bid protest, a mechanic’s lien, a bond claim — any one of these can stop a project in its tracks, causing even more problems down the chain. As construction law attorneys, we understand how to achieve practical and efficient business solutions to these issues.

We regularly represent developers, lenders, architects, engineers, owners, municipalities, general contractors, and subcontractors in legal issues regarding construction projects throughout New England. Our construction law team can draft and negotiate construction contracts to help prevent disputes from arising. When disputes do arise, the construction law team has extensive experience prosecuting and defending disputes in state and federal courts, and in arbitration and mediation.


  • Delay and extra work claims
  • Construction defect claims
  • Mechanic’s liens
  • Bid protests and other public procurement issues
  • Miller Act suits
  • Suretyship and bond claims
  • Real estate and development contracts
  • Commercial construction contracts, subcontracts, and supplier agreements
  • Residential contracts, subcontracts, and supplier agreements
  • Government contracts
  • General counsel services for contractors and subcontractors


  • Perkins Thompson successfully prosecuted a mechanic’s lien claim on behalf of a commercial contractor hired to construct a parking garage.  The developer paid our client the contract price – plus legal fees – within a month.
  • Perkins Thompson successfully obtained an arbitration decision in favor of our client, a residential contractor, when a homeowner refused to pay amounts owed under the parties’ contract. The home owner was ordered to pay the full amount owed plus an award of legal fees to our client.
  • Perkins Thompson successfully defended a regional commercial contractor from subcontractor payment claims and a mechanic’s lien claim. Perkins Thompson obtained a judgment in favor of our client (at trial) finding that no further payments were required, and then successfully defended the subcontractor’s subsequent appeal with Maine’s Supreme Judicial Court.
  • Perkins Thompson regularly drafts and reviews residential home construction contracts for compliance with Maine’s Home Construction Contract Act
  • Perkins Thompson regularly drafts and reviews commercial contracts, subcontracts, and supplier agreements


The lead attorney on the construction law team is John Hobson. John is listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2018, Maine Construction Law Section. He has been selected as a New England Super Lawyer in construction litigation since 2008. He is the author of a number of legal publications on construction law, including:

  • The State of Maine section on;
  • The Maine State Construction Law Handbook;
  • The State Public Construction Law Source Book (CCH 2002); and,
  • Contributing Author, Inside the Minds: Construction Laws, Settlement and Negotiation, (Aspatore Books 2007).

John is also a presenter of numerous seminars on Construction Law and Public Construction Contracts with Public Entities.

Joe Talbot, who is also on the construction law team, has been selected as a New England Super Lawyer Rising Star in Construction Law since 2016.  Joe regularly represents a wide variety of clients in mediation, arbitration, and state and federal court, and is the author of Perkins Thompson’s construction law blog.  Joe also drafts, revises, and negotiates construction contracts, subcontracts, and supplier agreements on both residential and commercial projects.

Dawn Harmon is chair of the firm’s litigation department, and regularly represents developers, homeowners, suppliers, general contractors and subcontractors in a wide variety of construction related disputes, including claims filed under the Maine Home Construction Contract Act and Prompt Payment Act as well as mechanic’s lien and breach of warranty claims.  An experienced litigator, Dawn is adept at striking a balance between zealous advocacy and pragmatic dispute resolution.


Perkins Thompson offers hourly billing arrangements as well as fee arrangements in certain instances, which may include flat fee or fixed fee services and/or project based billing.

Typical flat fee or fixed fee services include:

  • Drafting and recording lien certificates;
  • Drafting and reviewing contracts, subcontracts, and supplier agreements;
  • Drafting and reviewing settlement documents;
  • General counsel services;
  • Demand letters
  • Mediation and arbitration


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