Hugh D. Brown

Hugh D. Brown


 Hugh Brown 550x275

Hugh Brown is a shareholder at Fabyanske, Westra, Hart & Thomson, P.A.  He represents contractors, subcontractors and owners in construction disputes in federal and state court, and in arbitration.  Hugh is experienced in bond and mechanics’ lien claims and in the drafting and negotiating of construction and design contracts.  He also advises participants in the construction industry in regulatory issues. Hugh was named to the Minnesota Super Lawyers’ Rising Stars list every year since 2014, and is the Past Chair of the Minnesota State Bar Association’s Construction Law Section Council.  Hugh is also a Contributing Editor to the American Bar Association Construction Law Forum’s preeminent construction-related journal, the Construction Lawyer


Practice Areas

  • Construction
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Contract Drafting, Review, and Negotiation
  • Mechanic’s Lien Claims
  • Bond Claims

Representative Experience


  • Represented large electrical subcontractor in successful $30 million mechanics lien arbitration on 150MW solar project
  • Represented large civil and energy contractor on differing site condition claim on municipal landfill project
  • Represented a supplier in claims arising from an 850 mw natural gas power generation plant in Brazil.
  • Represented an EPC contractor in arbitration concerning a 700 megawatt supercritical coal fired power plant.
  • Represented contractor on multi-party claim related to beam collapse at Mall of America.
  • Represented owners and contractors in review and negotiation of construction and design contracts worth billions of dollars.
  • Successfully defended seller in arbitration arising out of alleged nondisclosure in sale of million dollar residence
  • Defended several property owners in ADA claims


  • Represented intervenor group in rate case filed by major Midwest electric utility.
  • Represented coalition of electric utilities before Minnesota Public Utilities Commission in contested case to set environmental externality values for resource planning.

Publications and Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, Construction Law Hot Topics, National Business Institute (2022)
  • Speaker, Construction Law 101 for Paralegals: From Contracts to Litigation, Institute for Paralegal Education (2022)
  • Speaker, “MnDOT Standard Specifications Update,” 65th Annual Minnesota Asphalt Paving Association Construction & Quality Workshop, February 15, 2022
  • Speaker, Indemnification Clause Strategies, National Business Institute (2021)
  • Speaker, Killer Sub-Contracts & Employee Leave and Accommodation, Minnesota Subcontractors’ Association, May 20, 2021
  • Speaker, Construction Risk Seminar, AGC of Minnesota, December 20, 2018
  • Speaker, Risk Strategies for Opioids and Marijuana on the Construction Site, Minnesota Subcontractors’ Association, April 2, 2019
  • Significant Changes to the AIA Document A201-2017, 11 Journal of the ACCL 19 (2017)
  • Questions Answered, Others Raised, on Minnesota’s Construction Time Bar Statute, May 7, 2019
  • OSHA’s Revised Stance on Workplace Drug Testing and Safety Incentive Programs, January 29, 2019
  • The New 2017 AIA A201 General Conditions, June 15, 2017

Professional Organizations & Achievements

    • Minnesota Super Lawyers, “Rising Star” (2014-2022)
    • Vice Chair, Construction Law Section Council, Minnesota Bar Association
    • Minnesota Supreme Court Historical Society
    • Member, American Bar Association, Forum on the Construction Industry
    • Contributing Editor, The Construction Lawyer

 Judicial Clerkship

      • Law Clerk, Justice Paul H. Anderson, Supreme Court of Minnesota, 2010-2011


      • J.D., University of Minnesota Law School, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, 2010
      • B.A., Carleton College, 2006


    • State of Minnesota
    • United States District Court, District of Minnesota
    • United States District Court, District of North Dakota