Bachara Group Obtains $10.25M Settlement for JAXPORT in Paving Dispute

Jacksonville, Fla. – Bachara Construction Law Group recently settled a high-profile dispute on behalf of the Jacksonville Port Authority (JAXPORT) over defective pavement design at the Dames Point Marine Terminal, negotiating a $10.25M settlement from a contractor and two engineering firms after nearly two and a half years of litigation. The Bachara Group took over as lead trial counsel for the suit at the request of the City of Jacksonville’s Office of General Counsel in March 2013.

“Our approach from day one was to prepare the case for trial,” said Chip Bachara, Managing Partner. “With that mindset and level of preparation, we were able to obtain a fair settlement on behalf of JAXPORT, which recovered a significant portion of its damage and avoided the heavy expense of a long and complicated trial. JAXPORT was a diligent defender of the tax dollars spent to recover from the defendants.”

Prior to settlement of the case, the Bachara-led legal team conducted more than 100 days of depositions, interviewing dozens of witnesses throughout the Southeastern U.S. They analyzed more than 1.2 million documents, eventually condensing them into 2,300 exhibits to prepare the case for trial. Due to the technical nature of the issues and complexity of the claims, experts for the case were retained from as far away as the U.K., and the mediator who assisted with the settlement was from San Francisco.

A unique challenge in the case was the death of a primary witness — the Port’s main onsite manager for construction of the marine terminal — who passed away prior to the lawsuit being filed. As a result, the legal team had to dig deep into reams of records and locate other former employees to recreate events and decisions made years earlier about details of the design and construction.

Another challenge was the highly technical nature of the subject matter, which related to the bearing capacities, behavior and interaction of various types of pavement, base materials and soils under a variety of loading conditions.

“After litigating a number of highly complex cases, Brian and I have become adept at boiling complex issues down to concepts that are more easily digested by a judge and jury in the compressed amount of time allowed by a trial. We needed every bit of that ability in preparing this case for trial.”
Bachara Group has handled some of the most complex major construction-related disputes in Northeast Florida. The depth of the firm’s experience in preparing and trying complex construction disputes laid the foundation for successful resolution of the JAXPORT case.

About Bachara Construction Law Group

Bachara Construction Law Group provides expert legal representation to public and private owners, developers, design professionals, contractors, subcontractors and material suppliers throughout the Southeast. With decades of collective experience in every aspect of construction law, the Bachara Group is uniquely qualified to handle every type of construction dispute, including the most complex cases. The firm’s attorneys take pride in providing top-level talent, technology and results while delivering the kind of personal service and attention that builds relationships and keeps clients coming back year after year.