About Sean

Sean Gay is a former construction professional who applies his extensive industry experience to help clients achieve their goals. Before joining Stoel Rives, Sean managed construction projects in Washington and Hawaii. As a construction project manager, Sean was intimately involved in the technical and financial aspects of his projects.

Clients rely on Sean’s ability to leverage his real-world experience to their legal issues. He advises clients on a broad range of matters, including project management issues, contract negotiations, public contracting issues, bid protests, and disputes. Sean has extensive experience litigating and arbitrating a wide variety of complex construction matters. His knowledge about how construction projects get managed and built—and occasionally result in disputes—has proved an invaluable resource in his legal career.

Sean is a partner in Stoel Rives’ Construction & Design group.

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Construction Claims Litigation

  • Representation of subcontractor in large litigation matter involving delay and defective work claims (Washington)
  • Representation of developers/owners in multiple contracts and litigation matters (multistate)
  • Representation of local developer in large dispute involving delay and defective work claims asserted by national homebuilder (Oregon)
  • Representation of major technology company defending and pursuing claims related to manufacturing facility construction and design (Oregon)

Construction Defects Litigation

  • Representation of large school district owner in multimillion-dollar litigation matter involving construction defects in a recently constructed school building (Oregon)
  • Representation of owner in multimillion-dollar litigation matter involving defects in a mixed-use condominium project (Oregon)
  • Representation of developer/owner in multiple defect litigation matters for western states hospitality developer (California, Oregon and Washington)

Construction Lien Disputes and Litigation

  • Representation of large national lender in lien foreclosure litigation matter (Oregon)
  • Representation of design-build subcontractor in lien foreclosure matter (Oregon)
  • Representation of contractors in multiple construction lien matters (Oregon and Washington)

Public Contracting

  • Representation of public owner on construction and design procurement and CMGC contracting issues related to large bridge project in Portland (Oregon)
  • Representation of public owner on construction of large middle school (Oregon)
  • Representation of water district in emergency procurements (Oregon)

Public Contracting Disputes and Litigation

  • Representation of school district in dispute involving performance issues related to a recently constructed high-performance school building (Oregon)
  • Representation of large public utility in litigation regarding a contractor’s bid protest (Oregon)
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Honors & Activities

Professional Honors and Activities

  • Included in The Best Lawyers in America® (Construction Law), 2020–2024
  • Listed among Rising Stars (Construction Litigation: Business), Oregon Super Lawyers®, 2008, 2013–2014
  • Member of practice group nationally ranked in Best Law Firms®, 2010–2023
  • Member, Associated General Contractors, Oregon Columbia Chapter
  • Member, Construction Management Association of America (CMAA), Oregon Chapter
  • Member, Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA)

Civic Activities

  • Past member, Board of Directors, Architecture Foundation of Oregon
  • Stoel Rives LLP Pro Bono Night Clinic
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Insights & Presentations

Insights & Presentations

  • Presenter, “Understanding How Contracts Can Shift, Reduce (or Increase) Risk,” Managing Engineering Liability and Risk in Oregon, HalfMoon Education webinar, February 25, 2022
  • “Construction Project Scheduling & Delay Claims,” Program Co-Chair, The Seminar Group, June 2, 2021
  • Program Chair & presenter, “Introduction and Overviewthe Coming Tsunami of Defect Litigation,” Construction Defect Litigation, The Seminar Group, May 16, 2019
  • Presenter, “Issue Spotting for Higher Ed Institutions: Campus Planning & Development,” Stoel Rives seminar, April 4, 2019
  • “Maximizing Negotiating Leverage in Today’s Market,” The New Normal: Preparing for Portland’s New Development Trends, Stoel Rives LLP, October 24, 2018
  • “Alternative Project Delivery Methods,” 23rd Annual Oregon Construction Law Conference, The Seminar Group, September 27, 2018
  • “Construction Claims on Private Projects—the Fine Art of Mechanic’s Liens and Issues to Consider,” Two States of Construction Law: Working in Both Washington and Oregon, Construction Law Sections of the Oregon State Bar and Washington State Bar, November 4, 2016
  • “Subcontractors are from Pluto—the Most Common Errors in Form Subcontracts,” Building Opportunity Conference, Moss-Adams LLP, November 3, 2016
  • “Is Progressive Design-Build the Next Step?” 21st Annual Oregon Construction Law Conference, The Seminar Group, September 22, 2016
  • “Does Your Construction Contract Protect You?” 2015 NAIHC Legal Symposium, Las Vegas, NV, December 9, 2015
  • “Construction Default Rights and Remedies,” Program Chair, The Seminar Group, June 3, 2015
  • “Structural Forensic Engineering,” HalfMoon Education Inc., February 27, 2015
  • “Launching Into the Future with Design-Build and Integrated Project Delivery,” AGC Summer Convention, August 9, 2014
  • “Construction Defects: Legal Strategies, Tactics and Practical Concerns,” Program Chair, The Seminar Group, May 16, 2014
  • “Construction Financing, Contracts and Risk Management,” Northwest Bank, May 7, 2014
  • “Tricks, Traps and Ploys Used in Construction Scheduling in Oregon,” Lorman Education Services, April 30, 2014
  • “Key Contract Provisions Related to Construction Scheduling and Delay,” CMAA Oregon, July 30, 2013
  • “The Law of Construction Bidding,” ASPE Columbia Pacific Chapter, June 18, 2013
  • “2013 Oregon Legislative Update,” DBIA NW Oregon Chapter 54, June 11, 2013
  • “The Evolving World of Construction Defects,” The Seminar Group, May 16, 2013
  • “Oregon Construction Law,” The Seminar Group, Sept. 22, 2011; September 20, 2012; September 26, 2013; September 25, 2014
  • “Minimizing Engineering Liability Exposure,” HalfMoon Seminars, February 29, 2012
  • “Contract Provisions Relating to Delay,” CMAA, June 21, 2011
  • “Public Contracting for ConstructionA Survival Guide for Oregon Public Agencies,” Stoel Rives LLP, March 3, 2011
  • “Avoiding Construction Defects: Before, During and After the Project,” Stoel Rives LLP, February 28, 2011
  • “Ethics in Construction: Avoiding False Claims Liability,” Stoel Rives LLP, March 7, 2008



  • State-by-State Guide to Construction Contracts and Claims (co-author), 2005, Supp. 2006–2016
  • Fifty State Construction Lien and Bond Law (co-author), Supp. 2006–2016
  • “Client Strategies for Working with Construction Firms,” Thomson/Aspatore, 2008
  • “Subcontractor’s Entitlement to Payment When the Owner Fails to Make Payment,” Construction Law Handbook, Supp. 2005–2006

Continuing Legal Education Materials

  • “Federal Procurements” (co-author), Oregon Construction Law, 2011
  • “Doing Business with the Government” (co-author), Advising Oregon Businesses, Supp. 2009

Trade Publications

Related News & Publications

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