Hugh J. Gorman III

Practice Areas

Litigation

Real Estate

Hugh J. Gorman III focuses his practice on construction law, creditors’ rights, and general business litigation.  As Chair of Prince Lobel’s Construction Practice Group, Hugh brings to the firm more than 25 years of experience working with general contractors, developers, owners, subcontractors, and suppliers who depend on his expertise and advice in all aspects of private and public construction law and claims.

His experience includes the prosecution/defense of delay, inefficiency, defect, extra work, changed condition, mechanic’s lien, bond, contract disputes and claims, as well as advising on the wide variety of issues that arise on construction projects from contract negotiation to project wrap-up.

Hugh also represents banks and lending institutions in connection with commercial collection matters, creditors’ rights, and related bankruptcy and lender liability issues.  Hugh has tried cases in Massachusetts state and federal courts, the United States Bankruptcy Court, and in various alternative dispute resolution forums.  He also has appellate experience, having argued before the Massachusetts Appeals Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.

A trained arbitrator, mediator, and member of the American Arbitration Association’s Construction Law Arbitration Panel, Hugh was named a 2016 Lawyer of the Year by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.  He has also been named a Massachusetts “Super Lawyer” as published in Boston magazine.  For fifteen years, Hugh has been AV-rated “preeminent” by his peers for legal ability and ethical practice standards by Martindale-Hubbell.

  • Suffolk University Law School, J.D., 1988; Comment Editor, Suffolk Law Transnational Law Journal
  • Bowdoin College, A.B., English, cum laude, 1985
  • Massachusetts
  • United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts
  • Boston Bar Association: Chair, Construction Law Committee (Emeritus)
  • Massachusetts Bar Association
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated
  • 2001-present: Named a Massachusetts “Super Lawyer” in Construction Litigation as published in Boston magazine
  • 2014: Irish Legal 100 published in The Irish Voice
  • August 2016: “How to Bond Off a Mechanic’s Lien,” Boston Real Estate Times and Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts’s Newsletter
  • August 2009: “Navigating the Uncharted Waters of LEED Building Contracts,” with Ani E. Ajemian, Modern Contractor Solutions
  • 2009: “Mechanic’s Liens,” Massachusetts Practice Construction Law, vol. 57
  • October 2008: “Lessons Learned from Green Building Litigation on Chesapeake Bay,” Modern Contractor Solutions
  • March 2008: “What are Your Options When Bankruptcy Impacts Your Construction Project?,” Modern Contractor Solutions
  • December 2007: “Who is Responsible for Bad Plans and Specifications?,” Construction Business Owner
  • May 2013: Moderator, “Surety and Insurance Coverage Issues for Contractors and Design Professionals,” Boston Bar Association
  • February 2013: Speaker, “The Mechanics of Mechanic’s Liens,” Boston Bar Association
  • June 2012: Moderator, “How to Try a Construction Case,” Boston Bar Association Continuing Legal Education
  • March 2011: Presenter “Negotiating and Drafting Construction Contracts,” Boston Bar Association
  • July 2010: Panelist, “Real Estate Litigation Issues,” Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education
  • April 2010: Panelist, “Sustainability: Green Leasing & Building,” Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education
  • February 2010: Guest Lecturer, “An Introduction to Construction Law and Green Building,” Building Design Typologies & Operational Principles of Real Estate, Harvard University Graduate School of Design
  • January 2010: Speaker, “The Dark Side of Building Green,” Construction Financial Management Association
  • October 2008: Speaker, “AIA Construction Contract Revisions,” Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education

Owner/Developer

  • Successfully defended developer of high-end waterfront condominium complex in connection with multimillion-dollar property damage, construction, and design defect claims asserted by condominium association and individual unit owners
  • Obtained seven-figure settlement for owner in state court civil action in connection with claims against a contractor involving improper design and installation of a fire protection system in 40,000 sq. ft. golf community clubhouse
  • Obtained high six-figure settlement for public owner regarding failures relating to $3 million PVC roofing system
  • Successfully defended developer of high-end urban high-rise condominium in connection with property damage, construction and design defect claims asserted by condominium association and individual unit owners
  • Successfully represented real property owner(s) and contractors in state court civil actions in connection with prosecution/defense of mechanic’s lien claim(s) pursuant to Massachusetts mechanic’s lien statute
  • Draft and negotiate AIA construction contracts on projects ranging in value from $350,000 to $20 million

General Contractor

  • Tried and obtained six-figure jury verdict for general contractor client in state court involving disputed contract balance and defense of breach of contract counterclaim relating to flooring system failures on a public construction project
  • Successfully defended general contractor in $6 million state court civil action brought by condominium association alleging construction defects, property damage, and design defects
  • Successfully defended general contractor in state court civil action with respect to claims asserted by municipality arising from defective installation of $500,000 slate roof on municipal building project
  • Successfully resolved general contractor’s claims in state court civil action against municipality for extra costs, extra work, changed and unforeseen conditions and inefficiencies relating to defective plans and specifications on $21 million public school renovation and construction project
  • Tried and obtained judgment for general contractor in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts in connection with claim(s) and counterclaim(s) asserted by debtor HVAC subcontractor arising in connection with multimillion dollar physical plant improvement project at a major Massachusetts university
  • Successfully defended general contractor before U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in connection with application of Massachusetts Common Law as it applies to breaching subcontractor’s right to payment for partial performance of its subcontract obligations
  • Successfully represented general contractor in arbitration in connection with its claim(s) arising on the Big Dig regarding scope of work change(s), extra work, changed conditions, disruption and production inefficiencies surrounding fire equipment testing in an abandoned highway tunnel near Standard, West Virginia
  • Successfully prosecuted bid protests for general contractors before the Massachusetts Attorney General and in the Massachusetts state courts in connection with public bidding issues
  • Successfully defended general contractor clients in connection with reach and apply actions brought by subcontractor creditors.

Subcontractor/Supplier

  • Obtained Massachusetts Superior Court decision in favor of subcontractor against payment bond surety, ruling that surety could not invoke “paid-if-paid” defense as to bond claim
  • Successfully resolved claim(s) of site work subcontractor in a state court action in connection with claim exceeding $1 million against general contractor seeking recovery of extra costs incurred as a result of encountering differing subsurface bedrock and groundwater condition(s) on road construction project
  • Obtained settlement for precast concrete supplier in federal court civil action seeking recovery of contract balances, extra costs and delay damages from general contractor in connection with manufacture and supply of precast concrete prison cells together with defense of counterclaim(s) asserted against supplier for defective workmanship and liquidated damages
  • Positively resolved claims of site work contractor in state court civil action involving multimillion dollar claim against owner/Commonwealth arising on the Big Dig for differing conditions of soil materials which caused subcontractor to work inefficiently and incur extra costs in handling and placement of wet soil and other materials not specified in contract documents
  • Obtained positive result for architectural hardware supplier/installer in state court civil action seeking recovery from general contractor of costs incurred due to changes in project plans and specifications which impacted supplier/installer’s scope of work and required supplier/installer to provide extra labor and materials on a building project
  • Obtained six-figure summary judgment ruling from Massachusetts Superior Court on behalf of HVAC contractor against subcontractor supplier of controls/equipment for breach of contract failure to perform on multimillion dollar public school project

Creditors’ Rights

  • Successfully represented various banking institutions in all aspects of commercial collections including suits to enforce loan agreements, notes and guarantees, prejudgment security, discovery, bench and jury trials in state and federal courts, and negotiation and drafting of forbearance and workout agreements
  • Successfully represented creditors in all aspects of bankruptcy law including trial of relief from stay, cash collateral and defense of preference actions
  • Successfully represented business creditors in all aspects of commercial collection law and litigation

Business Litigation

  • Successfully represented shareholder in closely held corporation in the defense of claims brought by shareholder alleging misuse of corporate assets and freezeout.
  • Successfully represented predecessor corporation in recovering corporate name from breaching purchaser of corporate assets
  • Successfully represented spring water company in enforcing terms and conditions of water use agreement.