Bert Chollet joined Watt Tieder in 2013 in the firm’s Chicago office. He focuses his national practice in the areas of construction and surety law, providing a full range of transactional and litigation services.
Bert’s clients include owners, contractors, design professionals, sureties, land developers, and other corporate entities. His practice includes contract negotiations and formation, contract litigation and alternative dispute resolution specifically for clients in the construction industry. His experience enables him to represent clients in all phases of complex litigation in both federal and state courts in addition to arbitration and mediation proceedings.
Bert is able to address a variety of matters for his construction clients, including, but not limited to bond claims and mechanics liens, contract negotiation for public and private projects, indemnity, delay and cumulative impact claims, bankruptcy claims and litigation, wrongful termination claims, MBE and DBE matters with the City of Chicago, various state governments and the federal government, subdivision development projects.
Bert also has extensive experience representing sureties in multi-project defaults, including the investigation and defense of performance and payment bond claims on private and public projects, negotiation of takeover and completion agreements, and performance of completion work. He has also supervised site inspections for experts and attorneys in construction, product liability and negligence litigation.
Before joining Watt Tieder, Bert practiced at a construction and commercial litigation boutique in Memphis, Tennessee and at a national Chicago-based law firm. Bert began his legal career as an appellate clerk for The Honorable Holly M. Kirby, Judge of the Tennessee Court of Appeals.
During law school, Bert was a judicial extern to The Honorable Diane Vescovo, Magistrate Judge of the U.S. District Court, Western District of Tennessee. As part of his law fellowship, Bert was a research assistant to Professor David S. Romantz.
- General Information
- University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law, J.D., 2005
- Notes and Comments Editor, University of Memphis Law Review
- Dean’s Award for Distinguished Service
- Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence for Best Appellate Brief
- Cecil C. Humphrey Law Fellowship
- CALI Awards for Securities Regulation and Cyberlaw
- Carson-Newman College, B.A., Political Science, 2001
- Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award
- U.S. District Court for the Northern and Central Districts of Illinois
- U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Norther District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
- Memberships & Affiliations
- American Bar Association
- Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, former co-chair of FSLC Young Professionals Subcommittee
- Forum on the Construction Industry
- Tennessee Association of Construction Counsel
- Tennessee Bar Association
- American Bar Association
- Publications and Presentations
- Speaker: “Contract Change Provisions,” Lorman Education Services seminar, Naperville, IL, June 2014.
- Author of “Case Update: Providing Clarity For Differing Site Conditions Claims On Federal Design-Build Projects” – WTHF Spring 2014 Newsletter.
- Author: “The Reallocation of Risk for Differing Site Conditions in Metcalf Construction Company, Inc. v. United States ,” Watt Tieder Newsletter, Fall 2013.
- Co-Author: “Securing the Road to Nowhere: When Subdivision Bond Payments Constitute Economic Waste or an Unreasonable Windfall to the ‘Obligee,’ ” International Association of Defense Counsel Fidelity & Surety Committee newsletter, July 2011.
- Speaker: “Troubled Developments: Surety Bond and Lien Claims,” Illinois Institute for Local Government Law, 18th Annual Conference, Naperville, Illinois, February 2011.
- Speaker: “Troubled Developments in a Troubled Economy,” American Public Works Association, Schaumburg, Illinois, May 2009.
- Speaker: “Mechanics Liens,” and “The Illinois Bond Act,” Lorman Education Services seminar “Construction Lien Law in Illinois,” Orland Park, Illinois, September 2008.
- Co-Author: “Obtaining Judicial Relief From an Improper Arbitration Award on the Basis of Corruption, Fraud, Undue Means, the Failure to Hear Material Evidence, or Other Misbehavior Prejudicing the Rights of a Party,” C onstruction Briefings , Thomson/West, July 2007.
- Author: “Enabling the Gaze: Public Access and the Withdrawal of Tennessee’s Proposed Rule of Civil Procedure 1A,” University of Memphis Law Review, Volume 36, Book 3, Spring 2006.