DeLave, Joseph W.
T: 248-433-7271
F: 844-670-6009


University of Notre Dame

B.A., 1984
  • with honors

University of Notre Dame School of Law

J.D., 1987
  • Administrative Editor, Journal of Legislation, 1986-1987

Bar Admission



Joseph W. DeLave

Of Counsel

Prominent Assignments

Representation of Ford Motor Company in defense of a multi-million dollar "cumulative" impact claim asserted by the general contractor for the renovation of Ford's Lincoln Park, Michigan facility.

Defense of contractor claims and prosecution of professional negligence claims for the Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner arising from an underground tunnel collapse and 100 year flood during construction of a CSO project.

Representation of Turner Construction Company in the prosecution of claims against the project's architect/engineer arising from the design of a 150 room hotel, conference center and parking garage in Bay City, Michigan.

Defense of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan against delay and impact claims asserted by the general contractor and several subcontractors in connection with company's expansion of its downtown Detroit facilities.

Representation of Master Temperature Controls in litigation concerning application of a statutory exemption from the Electrical Administrative Act, with trial court victory affirmed by the Michigan Court of Appeals.

Representation of Savarino Construction Company in connection with dispute involving general contractor and its surety arising from the design and erection of a tensile roof structure at the Phoenix Center Amphitheater in Pontiac, Michigan.

Representation of Beaumont Health in connection with the negotiation and drafting of contract to expand and improve Botsford Hospital in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Preparation of construction contracts for the M1 Concourse private garage and performance race track project in Pontiac, Michigan.

Representation of energy pipeline and operators regarding acquisition of right of way and permit issues for utility corridors.  

Member of the contract review committee for the City of Detroit Downtown Development Authority in connection with the construction of Detroit's stadia, Comerica Park and Ford Field.

Extensive experience in litigation and arbitration of a wide array of construction claims and disputes involving delays, differing site conditions, Liens, payment disputes, and construction defects.

Extensive experience drafting and negotiating construction contracts, including design, construction and design/build contracts.

Extensive experience foreclosing commercial properties; negotiating and drafting deed in lieu documents; litigating priority disputes.

Representative Clients

  • Beaumont Hospital
  • Enbridge Energy, Limited Partnership
  • Eyde Company
  • FCA Realty LLC
  • G2 Consulting
  • JCU International, Inc.
  • Magna International Inc. and subsidiaries
  • MGM Grand Detroit, LLC
  • MICCO Construction, LLC
  • National Construction Enterprises, Inc.
  • Oakland County Water Resource Commissioner
  • Pontiac Ceiling & Partition, LLC
  • Value City Furniture
  • Uniprop AM, LLC

Professional Involvement

  • Associated General Contractors of America
  • Legal Advisory Committee of the Greater Detroit Chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America
  • State Bar of Michigan, Real Property and Litigation Sections
  • Macomb County Bar Association
  • Oakland County Bar Association
  • Certified Civil Mediator

Community Involvement

  • Notre Dame Club of Detroit (11 Years)
    • Board of Directors
    • Past President (1997-1998)
    • Award of the Year (2007)
  • Lourdes Senior Community (11 Years)
    • Former Chairman, Development Committee
    • Former Chairman, Clausen Manor Committee (Alzheimer's facility)
    • Member, Future Phases Ad Hoc Committee
  • DeLaSalle Collegiate High School
    • Alumni Class Representative


  • Presenter, "Construction Defect Litigation: From A to Z," National Business Institute (April 2013), including presentation on the indemnity obligations of subcontractors and design professions in the AIA standard form agreements and ConsensusDOCS
  • Author, Information Alert, Managing Financial Risk During Construction (2012)
  • Author, Information Alert, Recommended Contracting Requirements for Contractors (2012)
  • Presenter, "The Contract for Construction: Standard Forms and Common Risk Transferring Provisions," Greater Detroit Chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America Webinar (January 20, 2010)
  • Co-Presenter, "Owner Internal Controls Critical to Subcontractor Selection, Buy Out, and Changes," Grant Thornton/Dickinson Wright Webinar (October 29, 2009)
  • Contributing author, Chapter 8, "Selecting the Correct Delivery System, Contractor, and Structure of the Owner/Contractor Relationship, A Practitioner’s Guide to Construction Law," (ALI-ABA 2009 Supplement)
  • Author, Chapter 1, "The Contract for Construction: Standard Forms and Common Risk Transferring Provisions, A Contractor’s Guide to Michigan Construction Law," published by the Greater Detroit Chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America (2005; updated and republished 2009)
  • Presenter, "An Introduction to the New Family of Construction Documents: The CONSENSUSDOCS," Dickinson Wright Annual Construction Law Forum (October, 2008)
  • Presenter, "Effective Contract Negotiations," sponsored by the Greater Detroit Chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America (April, 2006)
  • Co-Presenter, "Cumulative Impact Claims," sponsored by the Real Property Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan, Breakfast Roundtable (November, 2005)
  • Co-Presenter, "Insurance Requirements for Contractors," with John C. Hurley and Daniel J. Osterbaan of Marsh USA, Inc., sponsored by the Greater Detroit Chapter of the Associated General Contractors of America (March, 2005)
  • |

Areas of Practice