Biography

Jeff Sykes assists clients nationally including public and private owners, public utilities, a state commerce commission,  designers, construction managers, developers, and major contractors including EPC contractors. He is both a transactional lawyer and a litigator.

As a transactional lawyer, clients benefit from his construction litigation experience. His understanding of the construction industry and how disputes arise allow clients to avoid or economically resolve disputes through appropriate contract provisions. He has drafted and negotiated many types of design and construction contracts. His contracts are scaled to project size, fairly allocate risk, provide for dispute avoidance and early dispute resolution, and align the interests of project stakeholders to promote project success. Project values have ranged from several million dollars to several billion dollars.

As a litigator, clients benefit from his cost-effective strategies. He focuses on his clients’ goals, develops an early and thorough understanding of the issues, and proactively manages case staffing, activities and budget. He also pursues innovative approaches to early resolution when possible. Claim amounts have ranged from several million dollars to over $500 million.

Jeff has litigated disputes concerning terminations for convenience and for default, design errors and omissions, deficient construction, differing site conditions, delay, disruption, acceleration, loss of productivity, cumulative impact, and cardinal change. Other matters have included bid protests, warranty rights, liens and stop notices, claims against sureties and insurance carriers, and the prosecution of claims under both the California and federal Civil False Claims Acts.

His project experience includes power plants (nuclear, coal, gas, biomass, and renewable), process plants, wastewater and water treatment plants, manufacturing facilities, an international airport, hospitals, detention and court facilities, telecommunication systems, university and public housing, high rise buildings, a convention center, sports complexes, and other special purpose buildings.

Jeff has lectured throughout the country and abroad on topics relevant to the construction industry and has provided in-house claims and project management training for public and private clients.   

Distinctions

Chambers USA: Construction - California (2009 - 2016)

The Legal 500 United States - Recommended Attorney: Construction (2016)

The Best Lawyers in America: Construction Law (2009-2019); Best Lawyers 2017 Construction Law "Lawyer of the Year" in San Francisco

Northern California Super Lawyers (2011 - 2018)

Memberships and Affiliations

  • ABA Forum on the Construction Industry and Dispute Resolutions, Litigation and Public Contract Law Sections

Firm Highlights

Publication

Individual Accountability in the Huawei Trade Secrets Prosecution

In the ongoing legal battle over the alleged theft of American trade secrets by Chinese telecom giant Huawei, one curious aspect is the lack of charges filed against any individual Huawei employees. On February...

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Publication

Attorney General Finds Impact Fees on Density Bonus Projects Invalid

In response to questions from a variety of cities across the state regarding the application of “public benefit fees” to density bonus projects, the State Attorney General’s Office published an opinion on April 9...

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Event

CWA Regulation of Discharges to Groundwater: Permitting Uncertainty in Light of Circuit Court Split

Sarah Bell will speak on the Strafford live webinar, "CWA Regulation of Discharges to Groundwater: Permitting Uncertainty in Light of Circuit Court Split." This CLE webinar will discuss the "indirect discharge" theory of Clean...

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News

How to Plan for a Smooth Transition of Your Family Business

Family Wealth Senior Associate Lauren Galbraith discusses how family internal dynamics play a role in transferring significant assets, especially a business, between generations. Link to read the full article.

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Event

Non-Profits, #MeToo and Talent Management in 2019

Barbara Murphy, Chandra Andrade and Rebecca Stephens, speakers, Non-Profits, #MeToo and Talent Management in 2019

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News

Farella Braun + Martel Named Among the Best Places to Work in the Bay Area 2019

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Event

North Coast Cannabis Industry Conference

Farella Braun + Martel is proud to underwrite the North Coast Cannabis Industry Conference featuring keynote speaker Aaron Smith, co-founder and executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. The event will also feature...

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Publication

Who 'Owns' a Secret? Whether Trade Secret Licensees Have Standing to Sue in California

If the eye-popping damages awards in several recent lawsuits are any indication, companies are increasingly coming to see their private information as one of their most valuable assets—and California juries apparently agree. For example,...

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Publication

The 10th Circuit Correctly Construes “That Particular Part” Narrowly

We do not often write about coverage opinions from jurisdictions as far away as Oklahoma; however, a recent case from the Federal Tenth Circuit looked at one of our favorite topics and came out...

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News

Daily Journal Names Jeff Fisher Among Top IP Lawyers in California

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