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Builders Beware! You Cannot Hide Behind SB 800!

In Burch v Superior Court (Premier Homes et al.) 2014 DJDAR 1991 (decided February 19, 2014) plaintiff Burch, a Pacific Palisades homeowner, sued defendants Premier Homes, the developer, and Custom Home Builders, the general...more

The Construction Advantage

We hope you enjoy Bernstein Shur’s first edition of The Construction Advantage. This newsletter will provide you with insight into the current legal issues in construction, news and updates. We hope in this newsletter and...more

The Texas Supreme Court Issues a Liability-Coverage Decision Favorable to the Construction Industry

On January 17, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court resolved a long-debated controversy as to the scope of a contractual liability insurance exclusion in Ewing Construction Co. v. Amerisure Insurance Co. A contractual liability...more

Texas Supreme Court Reverses Lower Court’s Holding Excluding Construction Defect Claim From Coverage Under CGL Policy

In a victory for contractors, the Texas Supreme Court recently held that a contractor does not lose coverage under its commercial general liability (“CGL”) policy merely because it entered into a contract agreeing to perform...more

Texas Supreme Court Rejects Insurer Attempt to Expand Limited Insurance Exclusion for Liability Assumed by Contract, Holding that...

In a highly anticipated ruling earlier this month, the Texas Supreme Court rejected Amerisure Insurance Company’s attempt to radically expand the scope of a common exclusion for liability assumed by contract found in many...more

Texas Supreme Court Limits Liability Exclusion in Ewing

On January 17, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court issued a key ruling clarifying the scope of contractual liability exclusions in insurance policies. In Ewing Const. Co., Inc. v. Amerisure Ins. Co., 2014 WL 185035 (Tex. Jan. 17,...more

Texas Supreme Court Rules CGL Policy’s “Contractual Liability" Exclusion Does Not Bar Coverage for Claims Arising From...

On January 17, 2014, the Supreme Court of Texas rejected a commercial general liability (“CGL”) insurer’s attempt to invoke the “contractual liability” exclusion to deny coverage under a standard CGL policy regarding a...more

Texas Supreme Court Holds “Contractual Liability” Exclusion Inapplicable

In a long and highly anticipated decision issued today, the Texas Supreme Court held that a standard “contractual liability” exclusion does not void coverage for claims alleging that a contractor failed to construct a project...more

Utah Court of Appeals Limits Third-Party Beneficiary Contract Claims Against Appraisers, but Recognizes Tort Based Third-Party...

In Lilley v. JPMorgan Chase, et al, 748 UT Adv. Rpt. 48, 213 Utah App. 285, Nov. 20, 2013, the Utah Court of Appeals affirmed an order of the District Court dismissing the Plaintiffs’ breach of contract action against an...more

Homeowners Cannot Assert Claims Against Subcontractors For Breach Of Implied Warranty

Since 1979, Arizona courts have recognized an implied warranty of workmanship and habitability (“Implied Warranty”) regarding new home construction. Although a contractual relationship (“privity”) is generally required to...more

Door Opening to Allow Common Negligence Claims Against Construction Professionals

For several years, design and construction professionals have been awaiting word from the Washington Supreme Court regarding whether aggrieved parties are limited to remedies set forth in their written contracts or whether...more

Allegations in Third-Party Complaint May Trigger Duty to Defend

Although a personal injury complaint filed by a subcontractor’s employee alleged direct negligence only against the additional insured contractor, the vicarious liability coverage afforded the additional insured was...more

New York Court of Appeals: Vandalism Coverage under “Named Peril” Property Policy Can Apply Even When Malicious Act Is Not...

In a case with broad implications for property owners near construction sites (Georgitsi Realty, LLC v. Penn-Star Insurance Company, No. 156, October 17, 2013), the New York Court of Appeals has opened the door to broad...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Summary of Nevada Law on the Economic Loss Doctrine in the Context of Commercial Construction...

The Nevada Supreme Court has addressed the economic loss doctrine in the context of commercial construction disputes in a number of cases over the past several years. Nevada’s general rule, as detailed below, is that the...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Application of the Economic Loss Rule in Arizona Since Flagstaff Affordable Housing Ltd. v....

In a recent ruling, the Arizona Supreme Court clarified that the economic loss rule does not apply to non-contracting parties. See Sullivan v. Pulte Home Corporation, 667 Ariz. Adv. Rep. 36 (Ariz. 2013). This ruling both...more

Under Construction - September 2013: California’s Economic Loss Doctrine – Limits on Tort Recovery

In California, the economic loss rule addresses the distinction between suits in contract and tort. A contract claim can typically be pursued to recover all damages proximately caused by breach of contract, unless expressly...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Utah’s Economic Loss Rule

In Utah, a plaintiff must generally in be in privity with the “original contractor, architect, engineer or real estate developer” to bring an “action for defective design or construction.” Utah Code Ann. §78 B-4-513(4). This...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Economic Loss in Colorado

The economic loss doctrine generally holds parties to the benefits, burdens and obligations set out in their contracts and bars tort claims such as negligence, misrepresentation and theft for purely economic loss when a...more

Construction Defect Litigation: Right to Repair Act (SB 800) Does Not Eliminate Common Law Remedies for Actual Damage to...

California’s Right to Repair Act (also known as SB 800) provides court remedies for a homeowner when construction defects diminish the economic value of a home, even though no personal injuries or actual property damage have...more

A Full 180 -- The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals' New Position on Liability Insurance and Defective Workmanship

Since 1965, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals has consistently held that defective workmanship that caused bodily injury or property damage did not constitute an “occurrence” under a policy of commercial general...more

Arizona Supreme Court Has the Final Word—Again—on Economic Loss Doctrine

Last week, in Sullivan v. Pulte Home Corp., No. CV-12-0419-PR, Arizona’s highest court took on a lingering question about the scope of economic loss doctrine since its landmark decision of Flagstaff Affordable Hous. Ltd....more

Australia: It's never too late - getting sued more than 20 years later

The recent judgment of the Supreme Court of New South Wales in Dymocks v Capral [2013] NSWSC 343 held an architect and supplier liable for events that happened in 1989. This case is an important reminder that contracts...more

Georgia Supreme Court Rules Construction Defects Satisfy CGL Policy's 'Occurrence' Requirement

Homeowners sued their homebuilder alleging that the concrete foundations of their homes were improperly constructed. As a result, it was alleged that the foundations were failing, and the defects in the foundations had caused...more

Florida Requires Replacement Cost Payments Include Profit and Overhead Even if No Repairs Have Been Made

On July 3, 2013, the Florida Supreme Court held that an insurer making a replacement cost payment to a homeowner who had yet to repair the damaged property could not withhold payment of that component of replacement cost that...more

Arizona Legislature Adds New Limits On Indemnification In Public Construction Contracts

For many years, the Arizona Little Miller Act and the Arizona Procurement Code (A.R.S. § 34–226 and A.R.S. § 41-2586, respectively) prohibited a party from being indemnified, held harmless or defended to the extent of its own...more

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