Ben assists clients in complex business and commercial litigation, construction law, science and technology, government contracting and energy issues.

Overview

Ben has experience representing a vast array of clients across the U.S. in litigation, arbitration and transactional matters. Ben’s clients include owners, developers, general contractors, subcontractors and suppliers in matters involving construction design defects, performance and energy efficiency guarantees, delays, disruptions, cost overruns, government contracting, transportation, lien, bond and equitable price adjustment claims.

Ben gained invaluable experience working as a vice president and general counsel for a specialty construction company. This experience gives him vital insight of the ins and outs of the operational, financial and legal concerns at each stage of a construction project.

Further enhancing his construction insight and practice, Ben has also served as a project manager for a shipyard where he planned and supervised the maintenance and repairs for two U.S. Navy guided missile destroyers.

Ben has also served as a judicial clerk to two federal judges: the Honorable Daniel Manion of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and the Honorable Paul Magnuson of the U.S. District Court of Minnesota.

Before attending law school, Ben was an officer in the U.S. Navy where he was deployed twice to the Middle East.

Experience

Ben has represented a hydrodemolition subcontractor in a multi-million dollar, multi-forum dispute on a federal government project, which included highly technical issues regarding concrete bond strength, microfracturing and testing and inspection standards. He achieved a partial summary judgment on a Miller Act claim.

Ben also represented a railroad in defense of a CERCLA contribution action involving an estimated $200 million cleanup of soils, groundwater and sediments at a site in a former industrial harbor on Lake Superior. In addition to the technical challenges of chemical fate, transport and fingerprinting, this case posed unusual historical and evidentiary issues to deal with events that allegedly occurred between 1885 and 1947 for which no live witness testimony was available.

Adept at energy law, Ben represented the operator of a cogeneration power plant in an arbitration brought by the host chemical plant for equipment damage and lost profits resulting from the cogeneration plant's shutdown and inability to supply electricity and steam after an electrical storm. This case involved difficult technical issues regarding the impact of lightning on the cogeneration plant's failure to transition into an independent mode of operation, and the cause of damage to the chemical plant's olefin cracking furnaces.

He represented a commercial building owner in a dispute with a single use commercial tenant over the interpretation and application of long-term ground leases drafted nearly a century ago. Obtained partial summary judgment for the building owner on the applicable measure of damages.

Committed to the firm's pro bono efforts, he achieved a rare reversal of a criminal conviction for a pro bono client before the Minnesota Court of Appeals.

An experienced litigator, Ben represented a national home maintenance and repair company in several litigated and transactional matters throughout the United States, including payment, workmanship and warranty disputes.

He advised several national companies on energy savings performance contracting disputes, and provided opinions on the impact of state performance contracting laws.

Detail-oriented, Ben represented an owner in litigation involving design defects in to a new parking garage. This case involved technical issues including calculations of forces acting on the structural members of the garage. Ultimately the case resolved before summary judgment with a favorable settlement for the client.

He successfully represented a condominium homeowners association in litigation involving construction defect and misrepresentation claims against the developer. After successfully opposing summary judgment, he achieved a favorable settlement for the client.

He represented a national real estate developer in negotiating, drafting and reviewing numerous construction contracts on projects in multiple states.

News & Insights

Speaking Engagements

Co-Presenter, "The 'Responsible' Contractor: Complying with Labor Laws," SLS Construction Group Annual Client Update Seminar, December 10, 2014

Co-Presenter, "2014 Construction Case Law Summary," MSBA Construction Law Section, December 12, 2014.

Co-Presenter, Minnesota's Responsible Contractor Act-What You Need to Know," SLS Monthly Client Seminar, July 16, 2014 and September 23, 2014

Co-Presenter, "The Role and Authority of Magistrate Judges," Minnesota CLE Federal Deskbook Seminar, February 25, 2014

Co-Presenter, "2013 Construction Case Law Summary," MSBA Construction Law Section, December 13, 2013

"Introduction to Contractual Risk Shifting," Dakota Chapter of the North Dakota Construction Financial Management Association, March 21, 2013

Publications

Co-author, "The Role and Authority of Magistrate Judges," Federal District of Minnesota Civil Practice Deskbook, February 2014

"A Trap For The Unwary Subcontractor," Law360, December 20, 2013

Professional & Civic Activities

Professional & Civic Activities

Minnesota State Bar Association

Minnesota Federal Practice Committee

International Concrete Repair Institute

Minnesota Utility Contractors Association

Admissions

  • Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court of Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

Education

Regent University School of Law, J.D., summa cum laude, 2010

  • Regent University Law Review, Editor-in-Chief

U.S. Naval Academy, B.S., History, 2003

  • Platoon Commander
  • Varsity Football Player
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