Gerard W. Ittig

Legal Columnist

Gerard Ittig, of Ittig & Ittig, P.C., in Washington, D.C., specializes in construction law. He can be contacted at 202.387.5508, or

Articles by Gerard W. Ittig

May 2006
Written contract forms grow by mistakes. Contracting parties, particularly owners and architects, discover that some issue or dispute was not covered to their satisfaction. The next draft of the contract is supposed to take care of that perceived gap. The results of this process are complicated documents, with cross-references and qualifying language. READ MORE
April 2006
I have a friend who is a mid-sized electrical contractor. His work is evenly split between commercial and residential, with contracts ranging in value up to a few hundred thousand dollars. I recently spoke with him about his business and his responses to my inquiries were direct and honest, yet sometimes unexpected. My questions were framed from my perspective as a contracts attorney. READ MORE
March 2006
“The general contractor may at any time, without invalidating the contract, by written instructions, direct the subcontractor to make changes, additions or deletions to the work. Subcontractor shall promptly proceed with such instruction. READ MORE
February 2006
Civil litigation, whether involving personal injury or contracts, has one set of rules of “discovery.” Discovery means that the other side is permitted to find and (discover) all information you have concerning the disputes in the lawsuit. READ MORE
January 2006
Unilateral (one-sided) mistakes have a checkered history in the law, with some very famous cases as examples. One concept to keep in mind while reading this article is that the law reasons by analogy. A case involving the misrepresentation in the sale of a car may be decisive in a case about the sale of a smoke detector. READ MORE
December 2005
This unfortunate circumstance occurs every day: A company, concerned about mounting claims and litigation against it, decides to get rid of its assets by conveying them to the company owners, shareholders and others. The stripped company is now “judgment proof” in the sense that only a shell remains. As a creditor, you may be tempted to walk away and not pursue your claims. READ MORE
November 2005
In a typical old-time cowboy movie, there is always a scene where the bad guy says something like, “Give me the deed to your ranch or I'll shoot you.” Without question, the rancher's signature would be obtained by duress and the transaction would be void. But what of economic duress not involving physical threats? READ MORE
October 2005
One droll definition of an expert is any person who lives at least 500 miles away. The Federal Rules of Evidence are a little more expansive. Rule 702 provides that an expert witness is: “a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education ... .” This definition is expansive and flexible enough to give parties a variety of options to fit any particular need. READ MORE
August 2005
We get so used to terms of art in our professions that we sometimes fail to understand that others do not subscribe to the same definitions. “Field engineering” is one example. Does that term simply mean field routing or does it also imply some degree of design effort? READ MORE