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Sam Burford


Sam is a Partner specialising in Dispute Resolution & Litigation and Major Projects. He is both a strategic general commercial litigator and a pre-eminent front end and back end construction and infrastructure lawyer.
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Sam is an experienced commercial litigator and major projects lawyer.

Sam has regularly been recognised by clients and peers for his construction/infrastructure law expertise, most recently reflected by his recognition as Lawyer of the Year (Adelaide) in the field of Construction / Infrastructure law in the May 2021 publication of Best Lawyers.

Sam’s commercial dispute and litigation expertise is diverse. In addition to his construction dispute expertise, Sam regularly acts for clients in property disputes, wills and estates disputes, contract and corporate disputes and product liability. Sam also has experience in insolvency, work health and safety and environmental liability matters.

Sam’s experience in dispute resolution includes conciliation, expert determination, arbitration, adjudication and litigation. Sam strives to achieve early and cost-effective resolutions for his clients but is diligent and committed to pursuing his clients’ rights through to a final determination if necessary.


Sam has provided training to a number of civil and commercial building companies, industry associations and government departments, on topics and issues pertinent to the construction industry, most recently on how to mitigate risks in drafting and managing construction contracts (including in the wake of COVID-19).


Sam has experience in complex and high-profile matters. His experience includes:

  • Acting for Government Departments to prepare contracts for major highway, roadwork, bridgework, harbour, marine supply, and remediation and rehabilitation projects;
  • Providing contract drafting, procurement and contract delivery advice and assistance to both Government and private industry;
  • Acting for multinational private companies and Government Departments in disputes and litigation for major developments including hospitals, railways, prisons and mining sites;
  • Acting in sizeable estate disputes for executors and beneficiaries;
  • Acting for parties involved in partnership, property and corporate disputes and litigation involving contract, negligence and misleading and deceptive conduct and associated claims;
  • Acting for corporations (private and statutory) in relation to environmental prosecutions and work, health and safety investigations;
  • Acting for large construction companies in litigation and alternative dispute proceedings (arbitrations, expert determinations and adjudications),
  • Acting for residential builders and home owners in the drafting of residential building contracts and the prosecution and resolution of disputes.

Sam's Expertise

    • Law Council, Business Law Section, Construction and Infrastructure Law Committee Member
    • Australian Institute of Building Member
    • Housing Industry Association Member
    • Civil Contractors Federation (SA) Member
    • Bachelor of Laws (Hons)
    • Bachelor of Commerce
    • Lawyer of the Year, Best Lawyers, Construction/Infrastructure Law 2022
    • Best Lawyers, Construction/Infrastructure Law 2020-current
    • Doyle’s Guide, Leading Front End Construction and Infrastructure Lawyer 2017-current
    • Doyles Guide, Leading Construction and Infrastructure Litigation Lawyer 2017-current, (Preeminent 2023).