Dear LBM Dealers and Distributors:

The latest column by Don Magruder, "Is the Construction Industry Functionally Bankrupt?," refers to a dramatic and disturbing increase that he's seen in builders' attempts to put "Pay When Paid" clauses into contracts. My question to you is: Are you bedeviled by "Pay When Paid" clauses, too?

We'd like to write about this issue and thus want to learn whether you've increasingly been seeing deals proposed in which contractors legally aren't required to pay you until they in turn get paid. Is that the case? We also have seen provisions put into contracts that even bar you from attempting to get money from the surety bond in cases involving nonpayment. Has that happened to you?

Feel free to tell us by using the comments section below. And if you'd rather talk privately, email me at I look forward to hearing from you.

Craig Webb