Mr. Belcher focuses his practice in various facets of construction and surety law, including commercial and residential development law, complex construction litigation, and construction defect and construction-related product liability litigation. He has tried countless lawsuits to jury and non-jury verdicts and has obtained numerous defense verdicts on behalf of his clients in various types of construction, business, and insurance-driven lawsuits. He also has marked experience in forms of alternative dispute resolution including mediations, AAA arbitrations, and private arbitrations. In 2012 Mr. Belcher was selected a Super Lawyers Rising Star in Construction and Surety Law by Thompson Reuters, a designation awarded to the top 2.5 percent of lawyers in South Carolina in this practice area.
Mr. Belcher has represented construction sureties, general contractors, sub-contractors and owners in every aspect of the construction process. He routinely advises contractors and owners on risk allocation methods and contract forms to make the construction process run smoothly and to clearly set forth the parties expectations. In this capacity, he commonly counsels businesses on securing proper forms of insurance to include general liability coverage, builder’s risk coverage and securing adequate project-specific payment and performance bonds. During the construction process, he remains involved to address any payment and performance issues that may arise. To the extent that parties encounter performance issues and/or delay claims during and after the project, Mr. Belcher works to resolve these issues without the need for protracted litigation. He has assisted in the work-out and pre-suit resolution of numerous projects dealing with payment and performance construction claims. To the extent litigation becomes necessary, he is able to steer his clients through the process, utilizing his years of experience as a trial attorney.
Mr. Belcher has represented the full gambit of construction professionals and owners. From multi-family development companies, to general contractors on multi-million dollar projects, to the single family home owner or subcontractor who is bogged down in the construction process, Mr. Belcher has stepped in to serve. He is also routinely asked to serve as coverage counsel to the insurance industry concerning the rights of insurers and the businesses they insure with regard to complex construction insurance coverage issues.
In addition to his professional accomplishments, Mr. Belcher also frequently speaks to construction, insurance and business professionals on various legal topics including, but not limited to:
South Carolina Jury Verdicts and Trends: A Focus on Orangeburg and Allendale Counties, South Carolina Law Update
Presentation of North Carolina and South Carolina State Law Issues
What the Other Side is Thinking: Trends in Opening Arguments and Trial Strategy and South Carolina Jury Verdict Update
Joint and Several Liability in South Carolina and the Value of Contribution Claims in Construction Litigation
Managing the Schedule and Cost of Delays: A Discussion of Typical Contract Terms, Excusable v. Non-Excusable Delay, South Carolina’s Treatment of Delay Damages, and Liquidated Damages
Handling Change Orders: Contractual Clauses and Their Importance in Avoiding Disputes and Determining the Cost of Changes
Understanding Legal and Practical Consequences of Alternative Project Delivery Methods
While in college, Mr. Belcher was a member of the Hampden-Sydney College Honor Court, Sophomore Chair of the College Activities Committee, and a 3-Year lettermen on an NCAA College football team. During law school, he was a member of the West Virginia Law Review, was Associate Justice of West Virginia University College of Law Moot Court Bar, received the “book” award in Complex Commercial Drafting, and was a participant in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program. He received his law degree with a concentration in commercial business matters.
Mr. Belcher has handled payment and performance bond claims for contractors and sureties in excess of 50 million dollars. He has handled the defense of construction professionals in multi-family construction defect lawsuits involving more than 4000 units. He has also served as coverage counsel and has prepared coverage opinions concerning the applicability of construction/CGL insurance policies to various claims of alleged construction deficiencies. Mr. Belcher uses his knowledge of the construction industry and his legal experience to obtain results for the construction professionals, insurance companies, and sureties he represents.
In conjunction with Mr. Belcher's construction practice, Mr. Belcher has experience in environmental concerns impacted by construction projects. He has previously represented coal companies, rock quarries and municipalities in the environmental impacts of storm water retention and detention ponds, as well as the environmental impact of blasting activities. He has also advised local contractors and land owners on environmental concerns.
Mr. Belcher routinely represents insurance companies and the people and businesses they insure in all facets of coverage litigation. He also routinely serves as coverage counsel for insurers, prosecutes declaratory judgment actions concerning coverage, and defends insurers in first-party bad-faith litigation.
Mr. Belcher has represented various businesses in the construction industry and consumer industry involving claims of defective products. His experience includes representing one of the world's largest tractor/farm equipment companies in a tractor roll-over claim, representing a national sporting goods equipment supplier, and representing a local supplier of crane rigging equipment.
Mr. Belcher has a long history of representing the retail and hospitality industry. His experience in this industry is by no means limited to addressing construction issues. He also represents members of this industry in various liability claims involving onsite injuries to employees and patrons and other matters that directly impact his clients. He has handled matters for shopping malls, national grocery stores, restaurants, and local retail stores throughout South Carolina. Mr. Belcher uses his knowledge of insurance coverage law and his trial advocacy skills to serve his retail and hospitality clients.