Five Questions for Better Client Selection - Question 5
Posted on Aug. 24, 2012

What is the reputation of your client?

Discovering your client’s reputation can provide reassurance or an early warning. If you are approached to complete an unfinished project, ask the client and the previous design professionals why their relationship ended. If issues such as non-payment led to the termination, think twice before expecting things to be different with you.

Most state court records are public information and can be easily searched. If your client has a litigious reputation, find out before you become the next defendant.  If your client has multiple judgments entered against it, that may be a sign that your client does not pay its debts.

You may already know your client’s reputation because you’ve done business with them previously.  Do not expect things to be different if a client has already treated you poorly.  Your past relationship should be a guide for future dealings.

In summary, the five questions for better client selection are designed to reduce risk and increase the likelihood of a successful project.  Despite best efforts, sometimes things go wrong on a project. Waiting until that unfortunate circumstance is too late to begin figuring out who your dispute is with and your chances for a successive resolution. Who your client is will create or limit your options in dealing with a dispute. For example, it is pointless to spend a great amount of money in litigating against a business entity that has no assets. By understanding your client before entering into a contract, you can decline to provide services or craft the agreement to specifically address the situation and potential concerns should a dispute arise with that client.

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About Adam

Attorney Adam T. Mow

Adam is a trusted resource for architects, engineers and other members of the construction industry in litigation, risk management, contract negotiations and mechanics’ liens. Adam is also a licensed architect and a past president of the Utah chapter of the American Institute of Architects. He has been elected by his peers to the Utah Legal Elite since 2009.

Awards and Recognition

AV Rating

Excellence in the Study of Architecture, American Institute of Architects Certificate of Merit, 1999

CALI Award for Excellence in Mediation and Advanced Negotiation, 2003

Community Mediator of the Year, Utah Dispute Resolution, 2007

Graduate of the Last Decade, Ball State University, 2008

Utah Business Magazine, Legal Elite, 2009-Present

Mountain States Rising Stars (Construction Litigation), 2009-Present