Design professionals win big in revised anti-indemnity statute

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Originally published in Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce - April 5, 2012.

On March 30, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed into law SHB 1559, which clarifies the scope of the so-called “antiindemnity statute” and now specifically includes design professionals within its coverage.

The statute voids any indemnity provision in a construction contract that requires one party to indemnify the other party for his or her negligence. Numerous associations representing the design professional community raised three major points of concern regarding the previous version of the statute, which the Legislature addressed:

1 The previous statute applied to “construction” contracts, but was unclear regarding whether that included contracts with design professionals, such as contracts between owners and architects. The revised statute now expressly applies to contracts for “architectural, landscape architectural, engineering and land surveying services.”

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