David J. Hatem, PC

Partner, Chair of Professional Practices

David Hatem is a partner in the Boston-based law firm, Donovan Hatem LLP. Nationally recognized for his expertise in representing engineers, architects and construction management professionals, he leads the firm’s Professional Practices Group which serves design and construction professionals. He is regularly called upon by this country’s leading architect-engineering firms to provide risk management strategies and solutions, especially on major subsurface projects.

Throughout his career, David has dominated the representation of consulting engineers and construction managers, providing legal advice to design and construction management professionals on major Boston-area construction projects, including:

  • The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority’s Boston Harbor Cleanup Project, and its Metrowest Tunnel Project;
  • The Massachusetts Highway Department’s Route 3 Design-Build Project;
  • The Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority’s Greenbush Project; and, most prominently,
  • The Central Artery/Tunnel Project.

In addition, David has been retained by professional liability insurers under owner-controlled insurance programs to represent engineering consultants and construction program management professionals on major projects throughout the United States, including:

  • LaGuardia Airport Central Terminal Building Replacement;
  • Maryland Purple Line;
  • New York City’s East Side Access Project and Second Avenue Subway Project;
  • A. Metro’s Red Line and East Side Extension Projects;
  • Seattle’s Sound Transit Project;
  • Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewage District’s Deep Tunnel Project;
  • Dallas’ DART Light Rail Transit Project;
  • Houston’s Rapid Transit Project;
  • Washington’s Brightwater Tunnel System;
  • Virginia’s Midtown Tunnel; and
  • Seattle’s Alaskan Way Viaduct Project.

For over 20 years, David has taught Legal Aspects of the Engineering Process at Tufts University School of Engineering. He also teaches Legal Aspects of Civil Engineering at Northeastern University Graduate School of Engineering. He frequently lectures on issues of professional liability and risk management for design and construction management professionals, and he has authored numerous related articles. His most recent book, in which he was a contributing author and co-editor, is Public-Private Partnerships and Design-Build: Opportunities and Risks for Consulting Engineers, published in 2016. He is also a chapter contributor and co-editor of both Megaprojects: Challenges and Recommended Practices, which was published in 2010 by the American Council of Engineering Companies, and the second edition of Design-Build Subsurface Projects, published in 2010 by the Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration.

Admitted to Practice

  • Massachusetts
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Claims Court