Dolley Law, LLC provides experienced legal counsel in surety and construction bond claims on behalf of contractors, subcontractors, developers, designers, owners, engineers, consultants, material and supplies providers, insurance bond providers and insurance companies throughout the State of Missouri. We have experience defending against surety bond claims on behalf of contractors and insurance providers and representing contractors and subcontractors in surety bond claims and collection litigation. From this experience, the attorneys with our Firm can help advise and guide you through claims, issues, or disputes involving surety or surety bond issues under Missouri or federal law.
What is a Surety?
A surety or surety bond is a form of a guaranty whereby one party promises to assume responsibility for the debt of another borrowing party if that borrowing party defaults. The borrowing party is typically referred to as the “principal,” the party to whom the promise to pay the principal’s debt is made is referred to as the “obligee,” and the promising party is known as the “guarantor” or “surety.”
Such bonds are commonly used throughout the construction industry. They come in several different forms, including but not limited to:
- bid bonds: guaranty that a contractor will enter into a contract if awarded the bid;
- performance bonds: guaranty that a contractor will perform the work as specified in the contract;
- payment bonds: guaranty that a contractor will pay for services, including subcontractors and materials;
- maintenance bonds: guaranty that a contractor will provide facility repair and upkeep for a specified time period.
Bonds may include indemnity provisions whereby the principal (or others) agree to indemnify the guarantor or surety in the event of a default and loss. However, even in the absence of a contractual term providing a right of indemnification to a surety, Missouri common law has recognized a surety may have an equitable right of subrogation under certain circumstances. See, e.g., First State Bank v. Reorganized Sch. Dist. R-3, Bunker, 495 S.W.2d 471, 480-81 (Mo. Ct. App. 1973).
The Firm’s surety law experience includes litigation involving state, federal and private construction projects and includes matters involving payment, performance, bid, and fiduciary bond claims. With this experience and knowledge of relevant laws, the Firm can help you develop better knowledge and understanding of your legal rights, duties, and options in surety matters under Missouri law and the federal Miller Act. The Firm’s surety law practice includes the following practice areas:
- Completion agreements
- Contract disputes
- Default claims and defense
- Financing agreements
- Indemnity claims and defense
- Miller Act litigation
- Payment bond claims
- Performance bond claims
- Supply and materials claims
- Surety claims
- Third party claims
Please do not hesitate to contact our attorneys to discuss a matter related to surety law. We are available at 314-645-4100 or by email at Kevin@dolleylaw.com.