Dispute Resolution + Avoidance

Construction projects are complex. And the more complex they are, the more likely it is that a dispute will occur.

Some disputes are easily resolved if addressed early on, while others require an extended commitment of resources. In either case, Cumming provides the expert guidance needed to identify potential problems and, if avoidance is not possible, to settle disputes quickly and confidentially. We know what to look for and how to achieve positive results on your behalf on a wide range of issues, including delay, disruption, acceleration, productivity, cost overruns, and defective construction.


Cumming delivers exceptional results and a solid return on investment through:

Cumming’s experts provide realistic evaluations through preliminary project documentation. This enables timely and informed business decisions on how to proceed. We also provide “sanity checks” to help clients and their counsel determine the issues and claims to pursue.

Cumming’s in-house resources span numerous disciplines and include: licensed architects, professional engineers, certified cost engineers, chartered quantity surveyors, schedulers, project managers, and LEED accredited professionals. Furthermore, our dispute resolution and avoidance (DRA) leadership includes professionals with legal training and experience, as well as trained and certified neutrals, mediators, and arbitrators. Our team members come from various backgrounds, with many having served previously as owners, designers, and/or builders. This diversity of experience gives our team a well- rounded understanding of every perspective and detail.

Cumming has extensive knowledge in a variety of sectors, including: commercial, residential, education, gaming, healthcare, hospitality, industrial, institutional, public works, themed entertainment, and government.

Cumming conducts detailed analyses and produces deliverables that meet the needs of the client and the requirements of the tribunal or panel hearing the dispute. Those deliverables, as appropriate, provide in-depth information tailored to the unique facts of the dispute.

Cumming’s dispute resolution professionals are expert analysts and we pride ourselves on our ability as communicators. Our findings strive to illuminate the essential elements of the dispute and are prepared and presented in a manner that is both compelling and easily understood by judge or jury.

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Our Dispute Resolution + Avoidance Experts

Cumming’s dispute resolution and avoidance team includes construction, litigation, and scheduling professionals who evaluate and resolve all forms of construction disputes. When brought in early, our team is able to initiate controls to avoid claims and litigation altogether. We take pride in our reputation for delivering results that far exceed expectations, the proof of which rests in the continued trust bestowed on us by our valued clients.

Erwin Watt

Erwin Watt

Vice President

Erwin has worked in the construction industry since 1986. He has been responsible for managing projects from conception through design, permitting and construction, and continuing through to completion and occupancy. Erwin has provided project management, consulting and scheduling services for new construction, repair and renovation activities.

As Vice President, Erwin is responsible for leading the dispute resolution and avoidance (DRA) and scheduling line of services on behalf of the company. He performs DRA/scheduling services, provides staff training and mentoring, and when needed, manages the development and implementation of new processes and procedures pertaining to our products. Erwin can produce independent construction schedules including both cost and resource loading. He also is adept at reviewing baseline schedules including periodic reviews of schedule updates produced by general contractors. His prior experience as a project manager is applied to mitigate delays through recovery schedules.

Sonny Jester, J.D., MCIArb

Managing Director

Sonny Jester, J.D., MCIArB
Managing Director

a. Sonny brings over 12 years of experience as a construction consultant in addition to more than 25 years of experience as an attorney with expertise in commercial and construction law. He has extensive experience working with owners, contractors, subcontractors, design professionals, vendors, and sureties in a variety of capacities.

He has participated in hundreds of mediations, arbitrations, and trials, both as an advocate and a consultant, and has presented in many venues on a variety of construction issues. Sonny provides contract document analysis, assessment of processes and procedures, and issue management, with an emphasis on risk mitigation, mid-project intervention and turnaround, dispute resolution, and claims support.

Brian Saccone

Associate Director

Brian Saccone
Associate Director

Brian Saccone has over ten years of experience providing scheduling services in the construction industry for both public and private sector clients. He has developed cost and resource loaded schedules for a variety of projects including a $5 billion nuclear fuel processing facility. He has managed and maintained schedules with over 15,000 activities.

Matt Grinstead

Associate Director

Matt Grinstead
Associate Director

Matt has been working in the construction industry since 2004. His scheduling experience includes QA/QC reviews, preparation of project schedules, and analysis of the impact of contractor change orders upon the schedule. Matt is responsible for providing comprehensive analysis of construction projects to execute corrective actions on troubled projects and/or determine the fair value of a construction dispute. He performs the tasks associated with the successful completion of project services. Matt brings diverse experiences to his projects, having worked with both a large general contractor and a developer.

Construction Claims Services

  • Construction Claims Evaluation and Development

  • Schedule Delay and Disruption Analysis

  • Creation and/or Assessment of Requests for Equitable Adjustment

  • Time Impact Analysis

  • Time Extension Requests

  • Damages Quantification and Evaluation

  • Concurrent Delay Analysis

  • Productivity Analysis

  • Acceleration Claims Evaluation

  • Construction Cost Estimating, Assessment, and Evaluation

  • Contract Termination Claims

  • Change Order Evaluation, Preparation, and Negotiation

  • Construction Claim Preparation, Presentation, and Negotiation

  • Construction Risk Identification and Avoidance

  • Mediation, Arbitration, and Litigation Support

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Litigation Support Services

  • Discovery Support

  • Document and Data Management

  • Interrogatory Response Assistance

  • Schedule Delay Analysis

  • Construction Damages Analysis

  • Labor Productivity Impact Analysis

  • Construction Cost Analysis

  • Demonstrative Graphics Development

  • Expert Reports

  • Mediation, Arbitration, and Litigation Support

  • Opposing Expert Cross-Examination Outlines

  • Expert Witness Consulting

  • Expert Witness Testimony

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Insurance Claim Consulting Services

  • Builder’s Risk Premium True-ups

  • Schedule Impact Evaluation of a Loss Event

  • Construction Cost Estimation and Estimate Evaluation

  • Replacement Cost Evaluation

  • Delay and Disruption Damages Quantification and Evaluation

  • Recovery and Remediation Schedule Development and Evaluation

  • Contractor Construction Claim Evaluation and Response

  • Insurance Claim Settlement Support

  • Dispute Resolution

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Discover How Cumming Can Help

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