Personal Injury Construction Civil Procedure

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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

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

Certificate of Qualified Expert Not Always Required for Claim Against a Design Firm in Maryland

For over 15 years, Maryland law has required that a party asserting a claim against a design professional – such as an architect or an engineer – for negligence in the rendition of professional services must file a...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

“John Doe” Saves the Day in Washington: Avoiding S.O.L. Defense by Properly Naming “Doe” Defendants

In Powers v. W.B. Mobile Servs., Inc., 311 P.3d 58, 2013 WL 5645561 (2013), Division Two of the Washington Court of Appeals held that if a plaintiff (1) names a “John Doe” defendant with “reasonable particularity,” files suit...more

Illinois Supreme Court Debates Limitations and Repose for Architects and Contractors

November was a relatively light month for the Illinois Supreme Court on the civil docket, with only one civil case on for argument. Today, we report on the oral argument in Gillespie Community Unit School Dist. No. 7 v. Wight...more

Statute of Repose and Independent Contractor Defense Bar Asbestos Claims in New Jersey

In a unanimous decision, New Jersey’s intermediate appellate court applied the statute of repose and the independent contractor defense and reversed a $1.8 million verdict awarded to the widow of a union asbestos insulator. ...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

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

Defendants in New Jersey Construction Case May Seek Contribution Credits for Fault of Co-Defendants Dismissed Under the 10-Year...

The New Jersey Supreme Court recently held that when claims against certain defendants are dismissed by virtue of the New Jersey 10-year statute of repose, fault may still be apportioned to the dismissed defendants under the...more

Expert Fees Properly Awarded Under Offer of Judgment

In Martinez v. Brownco Construction Co. Inc., the California Supreme Court decided a unique issue under California’s offer of judgment procedure, Code of Civil Procedure Section 998. The court concluded that a second...more

West Virginia Reverses Course, Concludes that Faulty Workmanship is Covered Under a CGL Policy

Last week, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia issued an opinion holding that faulty construction work qualifies as an “occurrence” under a CGL policy if it causes “bodily injury” or “property damage.” Cherrington...more

NC Court of Appeals Rejects Expansive View of Employer Liability

I’m an awful cook. I might even be dangerous. But at least I can say that I’ve never started a fire while attempting to cook. Mr. Timothy Spradley, however, did just that when he was staying at a Candlewood Suites Hotel in...more

Say it Ain’t So Joe! – Developer Learns There is More Than One Meaning for SOL

I was in trial last month. I couldn’t have asked for a better judge. Smart, fair . . . and witty. During the pretrial conference, opposing counsel and I were arguing over whether there was a difference between...more

In Site Spring 2013

Welcome to the Spring edition of In Site. This edition covers the following topics: - A brief overview of the “Jackson cost reforms” to civil litigation which came into force on 1 April 2013 - A note of the...more

Florida Property Owners: Be Aware Of This Procedure Before Filing A Construction Defects Claim

One of the most frustrating events for a residential homeowner, or a commercial property owner, is the day that they find construction defects on their property. From that time forward, the steps that are taken by the...more

Burr Alert: The Emperor’s New Economic Loss Rule

For years, litigating breach of contract cases in Florida meant having to struggle with the array of cases dealing with the Economic Loss Rule. In its simplest form, the Economic Loss Rule is a judicially created principle...more

Under Construction - March 2013

In This Issue: - Letter From the Editor - Tips for Presenting, Analyzing and Resolving Delay and Impact Claims - The Ever-Shrinking Federal Budget: Preparing for Contract Cut-Backs - Colorado Court of...more

Weekly Law Resume - January 31, 2013: Construction Defects Premised on Negligent Design Theory

Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP Court of Appeal, First District (December 13, 2012) The First Appellate District reversed a judgment in favor of design professionals and...more

Homeowners May Sue Design Professionals For Construction Defects

In Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (--- Cal.Rptr.3d ----, Cal.App. 1 Dist., December 13, 2012), a California court of appeal found that a homeowners association could seek damages...more

Even After Work is Completed and Accepted by the Project Owner, Contractors Have an Ongoing Duty to Maintain Construction Site...

On November 21, 2012, the Colorado Court of Appeals issued a decision with potentially far-reaching implications. In Collard v. Vista Paving Corp., 2012 COA 208 (2012), the court concluded that contractors have a duty to warn...more

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