Justin Cotton – Director & Senior Construction Lawyer
Justin Cotton, Director of Lovegrove & Cotton, is a senior construction lawyer and pre-eminent building practitioner advocate. Justin’s practice is cross-jurisdictional having accepted briefs in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, and the Australian Capital Territory. Justin is an expert construction litigator, and highly experienced in medium to high dollar litigation building and commercial disputes. Justin gives quality regulatory and front end contractual advice.
Justin is presently Chairperson of the HIA Industrial Relations and Legal Services Committee, and a member of the Regional Executive Council, for HIA Victorian Chapter.
Justin Cotton is an expert at Building Dispute Resolution and Advocacy. Justin manages dispute resolution including negotiations, strategic planning and preparing matters for litigation in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and the ACT. Justin provides construction law advocacy at the VCAT and NCAT. Justin also represents his clients at arbitration, mediation and domestic and commercial building dispute forums.
Fire Cladding Dispute Resolution
Justin is experienced in the resolution of fire cladding disputes and regularisation of fire cladding issues with local governments.
Building Contract Advice and Drafting
Justin advises builders, councils and owners on variations, latent conditions, extensions of time, progress payments and on Security of Payment claims, together with contract advice and drafting for builders, building surveyors, architects and engineers.
Building Practitioner Advocacy
For nearly 20 years, Justin has represented building surveyors, building certifiers and builders in disciplinary proceedings. Justin is one of the most experienced building practitioner advocates in terms of his cross-jurisdictional experience in Australia. Be it Victoria, New South Wales or the ACT, he has appeared in person in numerous building practitioner investigations and invariably has generated the best possible outcomes in the circumstances.
Justin represents building practitioners and professionals facing charges and enquiries in all Australian disciplinary and occupational licensing jurisdictions. Justin Cotton heads up practitioner advocacy within the firm.
Building Practitioner Mutual Recognition
Justin has had a phenomenal amount of success in the facilitation of registration of building practitioners of the likes of builders, building surveyors and accredited certifiers, with regards to submissions and appearances for registration under the Mutual Recognition Act 1992.
More recently, he successfully represented a practitioner seeking registration courtesy of the mutual recognition criteria as a senior accredited certifier in New South Wales. The matter was resolved before it found its way to a hearing at the AAT. There would be very few practitioners in Australia that would be able to enjoy a commensurate success rate.
Practitioner Registration Appeals
Justin represents building practitioners in circumstances where their registration has been suspended or where registration applications have been unsuccessful. Justin accepts these briefs on behalf of both natural person and corporate registrants. Justin has been the point of call for countless practitioners in disputes regarding fitness and propriety to practice. Justin Cotton is well respected by local building authorities and it follows his advocacy in this arena provides best outcomes for his clients.
Building Regulatory Offences
Justin has defended practitioners prosecuted by the WorkSafe Authority, and has provided advocacy for building surveyors and accredited certifiers facing practitioner misconduct charges. He provides advice on issues under the Building Act and Regulations, the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, A.C.T legislation and the Building Code of Australia (BCA), including protection works, Building Notices and Orders and adjoining neighbour disputes.
Owners Corporations & Strata Community Dispute Resolutions
Justin has particular familiarity with the Owners Corporation Act and providing advice and representation for lot owners and Owners Corporations in relation to defective building works, warranty insurance, and Owners Corporation rules and procedures.
Justin has had carriage of large-scale and highly complex strata community class actions against builders, contractors, building practitioners and statutory authorities in both Victoria and the ACT.
Resolution of Domestic Building Disputes
Justin Cotton is an expert in the resolution of domestic building disputes, and has nigh on two decades experience dealing with disputes involving owners, builders, building surveyors, architects, adjoining owners, councils and other statutory authorities.
Justin is an expert at VCAT advocacy and represents his clients at directions hearings, compulsory conferences, and final hearings.
He represents clients in the resolution of apartment and multi-unit development disputes, along with matters concerning detached properties.
Justin is particularly well-versed in domestic building contract advice and advises both builders and owners in respect to their contractual obligations and rights. Justin is revered for his frank and sound contractual advice, particularly in respect to reviewing and drafting special conditions for standard form building contracts. In the unfortunate event that parties are forced to litigate, Justin’s expert knowledge and litigation prowess ensure our clients’ interests are front and centre.