Steele B. (“Al”) Windle III
A respected leader in construction law in the Carolinas, Al understands that each phase of a construction project presents challenges, and he brings his substantial experience to every issue, from pre-construction and design to contracts and claims. He represents a wide variety of clients comprised of owners, developers, general contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers. He guides clients through every stage of a construction project, including:
- Preparation of contract documents
- Bid preparation, mistakes, and protests
- Change order negotiations
- Project correspondence
- Claim preparation
- Defense of claims
- Project close-out
- Final dispute resolution through:
- Getting paid
Additionally, he regularly handles matters for payment and performance bond sureties on all types of commercial construction projects.
Clients find value in Al’s thorough understanding of the construction process, as well as the dispute side of construction law, enabling him to serve as proactive counsel when advising clients on how to prevent or resolve problems, as well as prosecuting and defending disputes involving extra work, delay, acceleration, construction defects and related disputes over insurance coverage, including water intrusion. Al has a proven track record that includes the successful arbitration or litigation of numerous construction disputes arising from, among other things, a $57 million condominium project in Florida, a $70 million highway project in North Carolina, a $100 million hospital project in North Carolina, a $20 million military housing project in Utah, a $100 million power plant in North Carolina and a $60 million oil spill remediation project in Florida, Mississippi and Alabama.
Beyond the courtroom, Al is actively involved in the legal community. He frequently writes articles on construction law, construction contracting and lectures on construction law related topics. He is a member of the Construction Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association where he has served as a director on the Construction Law Section Council (1995-1997, 1988-1990 and 2017-2018) and is also a member of the Construction Forum of the American Bar Association. Al is a certified arbitrator and is on the panel of construction arbitrators of the American Arbitration Association. He has been designated as a Super Lawyer and as a Best Lawyer in America for many years. He is also an invited Fellow of the Construction Lawyers Society of America.
- J.D., Wake Forest University, 1981
- B.S., Commerce, University of Virginia, 1978
- North Carolina Bar Association, Construction Law Section
- American Bar Association, Construction Forum
- State Bar of Georgia
- Construction Lawyers Society of America, Charter Fellow
- Successfully represented owner regarding claim by general contractor on hospital project for delay and extra work.
- Successfully represented owner of hotel in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, on claim against roofing contractor where portions of roof blew off.
- Successfully represented owner of new hotel in relation to owner interference, delay and extra work claims by general contractor.
- Successfully represented owner of apartment project against extra work claim by roofing contractor.
- Successfully represented owner of movie theater company against claims by general contractor for delays, constructive changes, and extra work.
- Successfully represented general contractor in North Carolina to enforce a subcontractor’s bid. A case of first impression in North Carolina.
- Successfully represented general contractor on a multimillion dollar claim related to construction of a power plant project in Bangor, Maine.
- Successfully represented general contractor on a public project where required minority participation was challenged.
- Successfully represented environmental remediation contractor on multimillion dollar payment dispute relating to the Deep Water Horizon Oil Spill.
- Successfully defended challenge to unilateral arbitration provision in general contractor’s standard subcontract agreement.
- Successfully defended general contractor in relation to delay and defective work claims by owner/developer on numerous apartment projects.
- Successfully represented general contractor against municipality to withdraw erroneous bid.
- Successfully negotiated favorable settlement for general contractor regarding a subcontractor’s acceleration and delay claim.
- Successfully represented design-builder regarding defective design claims by owner.
- Successfully represented general contractor on challenge by subcontractor to default termination by general contractor on condominium projects in South Carolina and Florida.
- Successfully represented environmental remediation contractor against claims by owner on project in Georgia that contract was unconscionable and charges were excessive.
- Successfully represented general contractor in dispute with the framing subcontractor on a housing project at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
- Successfully represented general contractor against claims by owner for delays and defective work regarding construction of a hotel in Durham, North Carolina.
- Successfully defended general contractor in multimillion dollar delay and extra work claim by masonry contractor on condominium project in Florida.
- Successfully represented general contractor regarding default termination of concrete subcontractor on a condominium project in Florida.
- Successfully represented general contractor to reverse a default termination.
- Successfully represented both general contractors’ and subcontractors’ sureties on payment and performance bond claims.
- Successfully represented general contractor’s performance bond surety on $12 million claim for defective work and delays on a condominium project in South Carolina.
- Successfully represented electrical subcontractor in action involving defective work claims by home owners association (HOA on multi-story condominium project in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
- Successfully represented grading subcontractor on multimillion dollar differing site conditions claim.
- Successfully represented grading subcontractor on delay, extra work claim on a highway project.
- Successfully represented fire protection subcontractor on delay, extra work, differing site condition claim on a Veterans Administration (VA) hospital project.
- Successfully represented numerous subcontractors on lien claims.
- Successfully represented numerous subcontractors on payment bond claims.
- Successfully represented grading subcontractor in dispute with municipality involving claims of extra work related to excavation, transportation, and placement of soil with related swell, compaction, and settlement.
- Successfully represented subcontractor on delay/inefficiency/extra work claim regarding construction of a sports coliseum.
- Successfully handled claims against numerous insurers for payment of consequential damages.
- Successfully handled numerous claims against builder’s risk insurers.
- Successfully represented concrete supplier regarding claim of defective material on project in South Carolina.
- Successfully represented base maintenance contractor on project at military base in Dugway, Utah, regarding extra work claim.
- Successfully represented base maintenance contractor on military base in Key West, Florida, regarding extra work claim.
- AV® Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
- Best Lawyers in America, 2006 – 2019
- North Carolina Legal Elite by Business North Carolina magazine, 2000 – 2013, 2016
- North Carolina Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers magazine, 2006 – 2018
- North Carolina Law Impact Leader by Business Leader, North Carolina Legal Guide, 2009
- Top Lawyer in Charlotte by Business Leader magazine
- Construction Lawyers Society of America, Charter Fellow
Bar and Court Admissions
- Georgia, 1981
- North Carolina, 1981
- United States District Court, Western District of Tennessee, 2001
- United States District Court, Western District of North Carolina, 1998
- United States District Court, Middle District of North Carolina, 1988
- United States District Court, Eastern District of North Carolina, 1984
- United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit 1982
- United States District Court, Northern District of Georgia, 1981