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Apartment Complexity: Appellate Court Sorts Out Multiple Coverage Claims for Construction of Uninhabitable Residence

In QBE Ins. Corp. v. Adjo Contracting Corp. (N.Y. App. Div. 2d Dep’t Oct. 29, 2014), an intermediate appellate court in New York confronted cross-appeals involving 15 different insurers embroiled in multiple lawsuits,...more

A Cautionary Tale for General Contractors

Construction lenders often go to great lengths to ensure their deeds of trust have priority over mechanic’s liens. Typically, as part of the construction loan process, general contractors are asked to sign documents...more

Not in My Kitchen – California Supreme Court Decertifies Golden State Boring Case

On November 11, 2014, the California Supreme Court rejected the recent California Court of Appeals decision Golden State Boring & Pipe Jacking, Inc. v Eastern Municipal Water District, 228 Cal.App.4th 273 (2014) which we...more

Singapore: The Second Persero Case*

A judgment of July 16, 2014 of the Singapore High Court enforcing a “binding” but not “final” decision of a dispute adjudication board under the FIDIC Conditions of Contract for Construction 1999 (the so-called “Red Book”)...more

The Construction Advantage – Issue 11

Welcome to the first Thanksgiving edition of The Construction Advantage! In this issue, we bring you yet another tale of a mechanics lien case and a priority between an engineer and a lender in a failed golf course project....more

Expo 2020 - part 5: Managing and resolving construction disputes

Introduction - Since Dubai’s successful 2020 Expo bid, development of new and re-invigorated construction projects has increased significantly. Tenders and new contracts are once more being awarded for a wide range of...more

Ninth Circuit Enforces Waiver of Subrogation Clause in Design/Build Agreement Against Post-Construction Property Insurer

Travelers Indem. Co. v. Crown Corr, Inc., 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 21101 (9th Cir. 2014) - This action arose out of the construction of the University of Phoenix Stadium (the “Stadium”), home of the Arizona Cardinals. ...more

Guardrail Ends – Open and Obvious Court Ends Liability for Contractor and Engineer Based Upon Slavin Doctrine

The Slavin Doctrine has been on the books for more than fifty years and is a favorite defense used by contractors, architects and engineers defending against personal injury and wrongful death claims. Generally, the Slavin...more

Hawaii Finds Unilateral Arbitrator-Selection Provision Fundamentally Unfair

The Supreme Court of Hawai’i concluded last week that it is fundamentally unfair to allow one party to an arbitration agreement to unilaterally select the arbitral forum. Nishimura v. Gentry Homes, Ltd., __ P.3d__, 2014 WL...more

Fifth Circuit Addresses Contractual Liability Exclusion

In its recent decision in Crownover v. Mid-Continent Cas. Co., 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 20737 (5th Cir. October 29, 2014), the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit withdrew its prior ruling and held that the...more

New York Court Revisits Architect’s Duty Under Contract and Tort Principles

Issues of privity and whether claims sound in breach of contract or negligence are common in construction defect cases involving architects and New York is no exception. Indeed, New York courts have long wrestled with...more

Vendees' Liens—Construction Lenders Beware!

A recent Arizona Court of Appeals decision highlights a lien priority risk for secured construction lenders when the financed project fails. The problem—known as a “vendee lien”—is most likely to arise when up-front deposits...more

New York Commercial Division Enacts New Rule to Promote More Efficient Privilege Logging

When responding to document requests or a subpoena duces tecum, litigants in New York traditionally have been faced with the onerous privilege log requirements set forth in Section 3122 of the New York Civil Practice Law and...more

Regional Steel: the continuing effort to avoid the cost of correcting the insured’s work

Casualty insurers normally do not expect to pay the cost of their insureds simply doing a good job. Insurers typically view their contracts as assuming the risk of delineated consequences – damages – if the insured’s work...more

Missouri Court Imposes Bad Faith Liability Despite Judicial Finding Of No Coverage For Underlying Claim

In Advantage Building, the Western District of Missouri Court of Appeals affirmed a judgment against an insurer for extra-contractual liability for bad faith failure to settle a claim within the policy limits. Interestingly,...more

No CGL Coverage for Faulty Workmanship Under Pennsylvania Law

In State Farm Fire & Casualty Co. v. McDermott, 2014 WL 5285335 (E.D. Pa. Oct. 15, 2014), a federal court recently held that an insurer has no duty to defend or indemnify its insured against an underlying construction defect...more

High Court Clarifies Duties To Subsequent Purchasers – Brookfield Multiplex v Owners Corporation

The duty of care owed by a builder to subsequent purchasers of a building has long been a source of contention. In a decision handed down on 8 October 2014, the High Court in Brookfield Multiplex Limited v Owners Corporation...more

High Court Finds No Duty of Care From Builder to Owners Corporation

The High Court has held that a builder of a serviced apartment complex does not owe a duty of care in negligence for financial loss arising from defects in common property to an owner's corporation (Brookfield...more

Mechanic’s Lien Reigns Supreme in the Battle of a Project Default? Not for a Waiving General

In what can only be described as a devastating result for a general contractor, the Fourth Appellate District held that a general contractor may prospectively waive the priority of a mechanic’s lien to the owner’s...more

Illinois Court Holds Insurer Estopped from Relying on Coverage Defenses

In its recent decision in Mt. Hawley Ins. Co v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s, 2014 Ill. App. LEXIS 655 (Ill. App. Ct. Sept. 9, 2014), the Appellate Court of Illinois, First District, had occasion to consider whether...more

California District Court Errs in Dismissing Insurer’s Equitable Reimbursement Claim without Leave to Amend

In the contentious matter of Travelers Indemnity Company of Connecticut, et al. v. Centex Homes, et al., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 115598 (E.D. Cal. 2014), the Eastern District of California recently reconsidered its July 30,...more

Get Exhausted! The Tenth Circuit Schools an Excess Insurer on How to Preserve Subrogation Claims in a Settlement

Claims against insured businesses sometimes implicate multiple liability policies issued by several different carriers, and it is sometimes prudent for some of those carriers to settle the underlying action, even if others...more

Subcontractors Can Still Perfect Mechanic’s Liens After Prime Contractors File Bankruptcy

One of the most common and effective ways for a subcontractor to secure a payment claim is to file a lien. Assuming any applicable, pre-lien notice requirements are satisfied, an unpaid subcontractor can lien a private...more

Construction Case Law Update - September #2 2014

FLORIDA FEDERAL CASES - - Contribution, Equitable Subrogation, and Breach of Contract – Insurer adequately alleged elements of contribution, equitable subrogation, and breach of contract claims in construction defect...more

Nebraska Appellate Court Gets Down to Earth to Hold That Faulty Workmanship Standing Alone Is Not An “Occurrence”

The insurance and construction industries have disagreed about coverage claims involving faulty workmanship for many years. Contractors believe their CGL insurance policies should always cover property damage caused by...more

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