People: Leah A. Rochwarg, Partner

Photo of Leah A. Rochwarg, Partner

Leah A. Rochwarg

Partner

Boston
Direct: (617) 946-4957
Fax: (617) 946-4801
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Ms. Rochwarg is a partner in the Boston office of Seyfarth Shaw LLP and a member of the firm’s national Construction and Government Contracts Practice groups. Her transactional practice includes the representation of key project stakeholders in large scale public and private infrastructure development projects locally and nationally, and counseling clients on commercial and government construction contract matters.

Ms. Rochwarg has extensive experience in the representation of clients in multi-family, manufacturing, energy, mixed use, data center development projects and regularly represents owners, developers (including REITs and joint ventures) and contractors in the negotiation and drafting of project contracts for private commercial, retail, high-rise residential, and industrial buildings and facilities.

Ms. Rochwarg counsels clients at all stages of construction and development projects, from assisting with the drafting of Requests for Proposals, through the negotiation of contract documents, to providing project and contract administration assistance and dispute avoidance advice, the preparation and analysis of claims, and where necessary, the resolution of disputes. She has worked with developers, investors, corporate real estate departments, and business, legal and risk management teams to advance their interests in the construction and development of real estate.

Ms. Rochwarg has also served as project counsel on a wide variety of projects including mixed use development, multi-family housing, manufacturing, schools, and build-to-suit leasehold interests, advising clients throughout the feasibility, development, construction, commissioning, and project close-out phases, regarding contract disputes and issues including design and construction services procurement; bid protests; claims for delay/disruption, defective design and construction, payment and performance, payment and performance bond enforcement, insurance disputes; and risk management and conflict avoidance measures.  She has represented clients in matters involving government investigations.

Ms. Rochwarg is a former assistant state attorney in Miami, Florida’s Dade County with extensive bench and jury trial experience. She is a trial lawyer and litigator and counsels clients on a myriad of complex contractual and business tort issues rooted in real estate and construction. Her practice also includes representation of clients in complex construction disputes at mediations and arbitrations, before state and federal courts, the Boards of Contract Appeal, and administrative agencies.

Ms. Rochwarg has a Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review rating of AV Preeminent®, the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards.

Seyfarth Shaw LLP is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as National Tier 1 “Best Law Firm” in Construction Law.

Ms. Rochwarg is a partner in the Boston office of Seyfarth Shaw LLP and a member of the firm’s national Construction and Government Contracts Practice groups. Her transactional practice includes the representation of key project stakeholders in large scale public and private infrastructure development projects locally and nationally, and counseling clients on commercial and government construction contract matters.

Ms. Rochwarg has extensive experience in the representation of clients in multi-family, manufacturing, energy, mixed use, data center development projects and regularly represents owners, developers (including REITs and joint ventures) and contractors in the negotiation and drafting of project contracts for private commercial, retail, high-rise residential, and industrial buildings and facilities.

Ms. Rochwarg counsels clients at all stages of construction and development projects, from assisting with the drafting of Requests for Proposals, through the negotiation of contract documents, to providing project and contract administration assistance and dispute avoidance advice, the preparation and analysis of claims, and where necessary, the resolution of disputes. She has worked with developers, investors, corporate real estate departments, and business, legal and risk management teams to advance their interests in the construction and development of real estate.

Ms. Rochwarg has also served as project counsel on a wide variety of projects including mixed use development, multi-family housing, manufacturing, schools, and build-to-suit leasehold interests, advising clients throughout the feasibility, development, construction, commissioning, and project close-out phases, regarding contract disputes and issues including design and construction services procurement; bid protests; claims for delay/disruption, defective design and construction, payment and performance, payment and performance bond enforcement, insurance disputes; and risk management and conflict avoidance measures.  She has represented clients in matters involving government investigations.

Ms. Rochwarg is a former assistant state attorney in Miami, Florida’s Dade County with extensive bench and jury trial experience. She is a trial lawyer and litigator and counsels clients on a myriad of complex contractual and business tort issues rooted in real estate and construction. Her practice also includes representation of clients in complex construction disputes at mediations and arbitrations, before state and federal courts, the Boards of Contract Appeal, and administrative agencies.

Ms. Rochwarg has a Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review rating of AV Preeminent®, the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards.

Seyfarth Shaw LLP is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as National Tier 1 “Best Law Firm” in Construction Law.

Education

  • J.D., University of Miami School of Law (1991)
  • B.S., University of Lowell (1987)
    cum laude
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy, National Trial Skills Session (2005)

Admissions

  • Florida
  • Massachusetts
  • District of Columbia

Courts

  • US Court of Appeals, First Circuit
  • US District Court, District of Massachusetts

Affiliations

  • American Bar Association (Dispute Resolution Section, Litigation Section, Tort and Insurance Practice Sections and the Forum on the Construction Industry, Environment, Energy and Resources, Real Property, Probate & Trust, SMART Growth and Urban Policy, Climate Change, Sustainable Development, Ecosystems)
  • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) – Editorial Board/Associate Editor for the Journal of Legal Affairs and Dispute Resolution in Engineering and Construction.
  • American Society of Civil Engineers-Construction Institute (ASCE-CI) – Attorney Committee on Design and Construction.
  • Associated General Contractors of Massachusetts – Member
  • Boston Bar Association (Real Estate Section Co-Chair 2018-2020)
  • Massachusetts Bar Association, (Lawyers Eco-Challenge Task Force) - Member
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy (Instructor – Trial Advocacy and Deposition Practice)
  • Women’s Bar Association - Member

Presentations

  • Ms. Rochwarg is a frequent lecturer and panelist for various programs and organizations.
  • “Shock Prevention: Mitigating the Contractual Risks of Building Information Modeling and Electronic Documents,” American Subcontractor’s Association, Inc. (February 12, 2008)
  • Session Chair, “Risk Management in an Era of Building Information Modeling”, Construction SuperConference, San Francisco, CA (December. 2007)
  • Panelist, “Benefits and Risks of Building Information Modeling,” IRMI 27th Construction Risk Conference, Orlando, FL (November 1, 2008)
  • “Legal Issues Surrounding School Construction Projects- Risk Management through Careful Contract Drafting”, 12th Annual New England School Facilities and Maintenance Conference, “How to Support 21st Century Learning in 20th Century Schools”, Sturbridge, MA (April 10, 2007)
  • Session Chair, “Green Buildings/LEED: New Opportunities and Challenges for the Construction Industry,” Construction Superconference, San Francisco, CA (December 7, 2006)
  • Panelist, “Liability Issues Resulting From the Use of New Technologies,” Construction Superconference, San Francisco, CA (December 7, 2006)
  • Panelist, “Retooling Architectural Practice for Collaboration & Technology”, AIA Desert Practice Conference, Indian Wells, CA (November 5, 2006)
  • Instructor, National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA), Building Trial Skills: National Session, Louisville, CO (July 8-14, 2006)
  • Panelist, “Retooling Architectural Practice for Collaboration & Technology”, AIA/TAP Conference, Los Angeles, CA (June 6, 2006)
  • Instructor, “Taking & Defending Depositions,” National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Boston, MA (April 22, 2006)
  • Session Chair/Panelist, “Legal and Liability Issues Relating to Building Commissioning”, 14th National Conference on Building Commissioning, San Francisco, CA (April 19, 2006)
  • Panelist, “Construction and Design Defect Claims in Residential Construction Projects”, MCLE, Boston, MA (March 8, 2006)
  • Speaker, “Solving Water Intrusion and Mold Problems in Vermont,” Burlington, VT (July 21, 2005)
  • “Legal Implications of Building Commissioning,” 13th National Conference on Building Commissioning, New York, NY (May 4-6, 2005)
  • Instructor, “Taking & Defending Depositions,” National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Boston, MA (April 28-30, 2005)
  • “Construction Contract Provisions: Clause for Concern,” MIT Faculty Club, Cambridge, MA (March 15, 2005)
  • “IAQ-Related Legal Problems and How to Prevent Them,” Build Boston, Boston, MA (November 16, 2004)
  • “What You Really Need To Know About Mold and Your Legal Liabilities in Vermont,” South Burlington, VT (November 5, 2004)
  • “Toxic Mold Losses:  A Billion Dollar Problem, Myth or Reality?”  Natick, MA (May 20, 2004)
  • “Mold Litigation” National Association of Women in Construction, Cambridge, MA (February 17, 2004)
  • “Indoor Air Quality Insurance & Legal Problems...and How to Prevent them” Build Boston 2003, Boston, MA (November 18, 2003)
  • “The Road Ahead: Opportunities for Growth in a Changed Landscape,” Worcester, MA (September 19, 2003)
  • “Water Intrusion and Toxic Mold” Sterling Education, Boston, MA (September 16, 2003)
  •  “Mold-Hazard or Hysteria?” Lorman Educational Services, Springfield, MA (August 15, 2003)
  •  “Pitfalls in Dealing with Construction” New England Corporate Counsel Association, Waltham, MA (June 4, 2003)
  •  “Mold: Understanding and Managing the Risks,” Environmental Business Council of New England, Waltham, MA (May 20, 2003)
  • “Mold Management and the Law,” Fisher College, Attleboro, MA (May 9, 2003)
  • “Risk Management in the Era of Mold Related Liability Issues,” Enviro Expo 2003, Boston, MA (May 8, 2003)
  • “Can I get coverage for that? Insurance availability in the age of uncertainty and growing exposure,” Boston, MA (February 25, 2003)
  • “Solving Water Intrusion and Mold Problems,” Lorman Education Services, Worcester, MA (February 5, 2003)
  • “Mold: Risk Management and Litigation Avoidance” AGC Mid-Year Conference, Boston, MA (September 2002)
  • “Toxic Mold: What is all the Fuss About?” Boston, MA (June 20, 2002)
  •  “Construction Issues,” for the Spring Conference of the Massachusetts Association of Public Purchasing Officials, Andover, MA (April 17, 2002)
  • “Construction Issues in Massachusetts,” Lorman Education Services, Peabody, MA (February 27, 2002)
  • “Americans with Disabilities Act and Architectural Access Compliance,” Boston, MA (February 6, 2002)

Publications

  • Rochwarg, L. and Broz, W. (2018). Sustainable Design and Building.  In S. McSorley, B. Bacon and L. Barrett (Eds.), A Lawyer’s Guide to Advanced Construction Systems and Techniques, More Sticks & Bricks (pp. 200-224). Chicago, Illinois: American Bar Association.
  • Co-Editor, Construction Law Handbook, Third Edition, ©2018 CCH Incorporated
  • Co-Authored, “Risk Management in an Era of Virtual Design and Construction and Electronic Document Exchange”, American Subcontractor’s Association, Inc.’s Contractor’s Compass Magazine (Spring 2008)
  • Co-Authored, “Creating a Green Culture – A Legal Perspective”, Venture Magazine (Spring 2008)
  • Managing Green Risks, originally published as “Building Green” in Venture Magazine, 17 (October 2007); reprinted by permission in Estimator, The Professional Construction Estimators Association of America, Inc. Volume 18, No. 3 (Winter 2007-2008)
  • Co-Authored, “Avoiding the Grey Area When Going Green,” Construction Specifier (November 2007)
  • “Sustainable Building: Managing the Environmental and Project Risks,” Real Estate Finance (October 2006)
  • Co-Authored, “Clicking and Tearing at Your Own Risk:  Potential Consequences of Electronic Contracting in the Construction Industry,” AEI/CI On-line Magazine - Means, Methods & Trends (Spring 2006)
  • “Sustainable Buildings: Managing the Environmental and Project Risks,” Builders Conference (May 2006)
  • Co-Authored, “Discovering Discovery,” AEI/CI On-line Magazine - Means, Methods & Trends (Spring 2005)
  • Interviewed for article: “Mold: The New Four-Letter Word for Hoteliers, Attorneys,” and “When the Water Won’t Go Away,” Hotel & Motel Management Magazine (November 1, 2004)
  • “Building Envelopes, Mold and Litigation,” The Construction Specifier (October 2004)
  • Co-Authored, “Hardened Buildings - Security By Design,” Intersec, Vol. 14, Issue 5 (May 2004)
  •  “No-Growth Strategy, How to prevent a mold invasion at your hotel,” Lodging Hospitality (April 2004)
  • Co-Authored, “Mold is New Due Diligence in Real Estate Deals,” Boston Women’s Business (May 2003)
  • “Mold Litigation: Next Tort Arena or Passing Fad?” Massachusetts Bar Association Lawyers Journal (January 1, 2003)
  • “Insurer Denies Allegations in Water/Mold Bad Faith Case” HarrisMartin’s COLUMNS-Mold (January 2003)
  • Co-Authored, “As Mold Concerns Mushroom, Guard against Liability Issues,” Boston Business Journal (May 31-June 6, 2002)
  • Co-Authored, “Project Delivery Vehicles and Technology Drivers,” Design Intelligence, Vol. 8, No. 5 (May 2002)
  • “Green Eggs and Mold,” Gadsby Hannah e-alert (April 2002)