Lisa D. Nicolls


916-446-2300 x3074
Practice Area(s): Business and Commercial Litigation, Construction, Public Contracts, Real Estate

  • Overview
  • Awards
  • Leadership
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Publications

Lisa Nicolls’ practice focuses on all aspects of general civil litigation with an emphasis on construction and business law, which includes the representation of contractors, subcontractors, developers, owners and design professionals. Lisa has been involved in numerous complex construction disputes and assisted in substantial trial preparation in defense of a contractor’s $20+ million claim on a large wastewater treatment plant project. She also assisted in the preparation and trial of a contractor’s $6+ million claim in the United States Court of Federal Claims, and has assisted in the prosecution and defense of numerous construction claims, both public and private, including mechanic’s lien, stop notice, and payment bond claims.  Lisa also recently represented a national homebuilder in a complex $5+ million dispute in State Court involving enforcement of an infrastructure cost-sharing agreement and represented a developer against a national home-builder in State Court involving enforcement of an option agreement. 

Lisa received her B.S., with honors, in Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior, in 2000 and was awarded her J.D. in 2004 from the University of California, Davis. Lisa is listed in the 2013 through 2020 editions of Northern California Super Lawyers and in Sacramento Magazine's Top Lawyers List 2015 through 2020.

  • Listed as a Super Lawyer in Northern California Super Lawyers, Construction Litigation (2013-2020)
  • Named in Sacramento Magazine's Top Lawyers List, Construction Litigation (2015-2020)
  • Nonprofit Resource Center, Look of Success Business Award Recipient (2010)
  • President, Board of Directors, Region Builders (2021)
  • Member, Board of Directors, Region Builders (2015 to present)
  • Member, Board of Directors, Placer County Contractors Association (2014, 2015)
  • Member, Board of Directors, North State BIA Associates Council (2014, 2015)
  • Member, Board of Directors, El Dorado Builders’ Exchange (2012, 2013)
  • Team Captain, Relay For Life of Natomas (2009, 2010, 2012)
  • Fight Back Chair, Relay For Life of Natomas (2010)
  • Graduate, Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce Leadership Sacramento Program (2010)
  • Volunteer Judge, National Ethics Trial Competition, Sacramento (2008)
  • Co-Presenter, “Supply Chain Woes: Contract Considerations, Claims, & Risk Management Strategies,” Zoom Webinar (June 10, 2021)
  • Panelist, “Construction Lien Law in California,” Lorman Education Services (2014)
  • Speaker, “Legal Update: Critical Changes That Could Cost You Your Money Or Your Freedom,” Placer County Contractors Association, Roseville (2013)
  • Speaker, “Understanding Contract Provisions,” El Dorado Builders’ Exchange, (2012); Placer County Contractors Association, Roseville (2013); Valley Contractors Exchange, Chico (2013)
  • Speaker, “Mechanic’s Liens and Related Remedies”: Valley Contractors Exchange, Marysville (2011), Chico (2013) and Oroville (2015); El Dorado Builders’ Exchange, Cameron Park (2011); Placer County Contractors Association, Roseville (2011); Yuba City (2012); Placerville (2012)
  • Panelist, “California Public Works/Construction Contracts from Bidding to Completion,” Lorman Education Services (2008-2009)
  • AB 1701: The New Law that Expands Prime Contractor Liability for Subcontractor Wage Payment Issues,” with Paul H. Kim, Placer County Contractors Association (January 2018)
  • “Legal Update: More Risks to General Contractors who Hire Unlicensed Subcontractors,” with Steven A. Lamon, Sacramento Regional Builders Exchange Construction Quarterly (October 2013)
  • “Legal Update: Under new laws effective January 1, 2012, when can a public entity withhold retention of greater than 5% and should it exercise its right to do so?,” with D. Michael Schoenfeld, (January 2012)
  • “Legal Alert: New Legislation Signed By Governor Brown Affecting Prime Contractors, Subcontractors, Suppliers and Public and Private Owners,” Co-authored with V. Blair Shahbazian, (November 2011)
  • “The Preliminary 20-Day Notice: What You Need to Know about One of the Most Important Forms Out There,” Co-authored with Steven A. Lamon, (September 2011)
  • “Advice to Contractors During Difficult Times: Zealously Protect Your Collection Rights by Using the Proper Forms and Heeding Deadlines,” Co-authored with Steven A. Lamon, (August 2011)
  • “Think You are Properly Licensed? Think Again! A Common Situation in which a Contractor is Not Properly Licensed and the Severe Consequences that can Result,” Co-authored with Steven A. Lamon, (July 2011)
  • “Caution: Oral Change Orders on Public Projects are Usually Not Enforceable,” Co-authored with Steven A. Lamon, (June 2011)
  • “Unconditional Waivers and Releases upon Payment: How To Avoid Waiving Your Rights When an Owner or Prime Contractor Demands One before Payment is Made,” Co-authored with Steven A. Lamon, (May 2011)
  • “California’s Mechanic’s Lien Laws,” Co-authored with Steven A. Lamon, (April 2011)
  • North State Building Industry Association
  • Placer County Contractors Association
  • Region Builders
  • Sacramento County Bar Association, Construction Law Section
  • Valley Contractors Exchange
  • Association of General Contractors
Bar Admissions
  • State Bar of California
  • United States District Courts for the Eastern, Northern and Central Districts of California

University of California, Davis School of Law
J.D., 2004
University of California, Davis

B.S., with honors, 2000
Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior
National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Deposition Skills Program (2009)

Contact Us

Murphy Austin Adams Schoenfeld LLP
J. Scott Alexander, Managing Partner

555 Capitol Mall, Suite 850
Sacramento, CA 95814


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