Architects

News & Analysis as of

Building Confidence: Consult an Attorney Before Starting the Construction Process

With high-end residential construction again on the rise in Southwest Florida, owners, contractors, subcontractors, design professionals and others should be proactive and mindful of the various statutory requirements and...more

Principal Architects on Residential Projects Liable for Construction Defects Outside Their Control; Developers and Owners May Pay...

On July 3, 2014, the California Supreme Court decided the much watched case Beacon Residential Community Assoc. v. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP. The court held that the “principal architect” “owes a duty of care to future...more

California Supreme Court Holds Design Professionals Owe a Duty of Care to Future Homeowners

The California Supreme Court in Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore, Owings and Merrill LLP (July 3, 2014), held – based on common law principles – that an architect owes a “duty of care” to future homeowners...more

Architectural Copyrights Should Be Treated No Differently than Other Copyrights

Zalewski v. Cicero Builder Dev., Inc. - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in addressing the extent to which architectural works are protectable copyright material and the proper framework for assessing...more

The California Supreme Court Decides In Favor Of Homeowners In Disputes With California’s Architects

In the case of Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore Owings and Merrill et. al. (July 3, 2014, S208173) Cal.4th, a condominium homeowners association, sued the developer of the project and the project architect...more

Is Your Design Professional Construction Contract Too Friendly? (Law Note)

My husband often travels the back roads between Chapel Hill and Fuquay Varina to visit friends. En route (a circuitous route that goes past Sharon Harris Nuclear Power Plant, among other places), he passes by the “Friendly...more

California Supreme Court Upholds Design Professionals' Duty to Future Residential Purchasers

Design professionals, such as architects and engineers, often seek to avoid liability to third party property purchasers for their negligence by arguing that their role in preparing plans was too remote for a duty to be...more

Architects May Be Sued Directly by Homeowners Association for Design Defects

In a unanimous decision, California’s Supreme Court has ruled that the principal architects for a condominium project may be sued directly by a condominium homeowners association for design defects. The case, decided July 3,...more

Illinois Supreme Court Upholds Dismissal Of School District’s Claim Against Its Architect

The Illinois Supreme Court recently issued a decision in Gillespie Community Unit School District No. 7 v. Wight & Company that upholds the dismissal of the District’s claim of fraudulent misrepresentation against its...more

ConstructLaw - January 2014

U.S. Supreme Court Holds Forum-Selection Clauses Are Presumptively Enforceable - Atl. Marine Constr. Co. v. United States Dist. Court 2013 U.S. LEXIS 8775 (U.S. 2013) - This action arose out of a forum-selection...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Five-Year Statute Applies to Fraud Claims Against Architects

On Friday afternoon, in an opinion by Justice Robert R. Thomas, a unanimous Illinois Supreme Court held that fraud-based claims against architects are subject to a five-year statute of limitations. In Gillespie Community Unit...more

Construction Law Insight: Minnesota Supreme Court Rules In Favor Of Contractors In Government Data Practices Act Case

On November 20, 2013, the Minnesota Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in the case of Helmberger v. Johnson Controls, Inc. The Court ruled in favor of Johnson Controls, Inc. (JCI) and its subcontractor,...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

New Green Standards; Same Green Warnings for Architects & Engineers (law note)

The newest version of the LEED ratings system, LEED v4, has officially been released. For a comparison of the major changes between LEED 2009 and LEEDv4, check out this downloadable form from the USGBC....more

Builder Beware! Does Your Project Infringe Someone’s Copyright?

On Friday, November 8, 2013, the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, which comprises Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi, affirmed a $3.2 million damages award for copyright infringement in favor of...more

Under Construction - September 2013: Arizona Court to Architect: You Have One Less Payment Tool than Your Contractor Counterparts

Architects occasionally get into payment disputes with project owners in much the same way as general contractors do. When that relationship sours, and litigation becomes necessary to secure payment, architects and...more

Construction Concepts Tip #6: Architects

A recent report from McGraw-Hill Construction’s research and analytics unit reported that the total volume of construction contracts in the South Florida area has reached $3.7 billion for 2013, a 24% increase over the same...more

Legislative Update

Construction legislation in the 2013 session was much different from 2011. In 2011 many new construction related laws were passed including governance of indemnities and mechanic’s liens. In 2013 many significant...more

Nevada Supreme Court Extends Design Professional Economic Loss Rule Defense to Negligent Misrepresentation Claims on Commercial...

In 2009, the Nevada Supreme Court (“NSC”) applied the economic loss rule to bar claims of professional negligence by design professionals in commercial construction projects, ruling that “[i]n the context of engineers and...more

Annual Review of Significant Cases Affecting Design Professionals

This annual update is to provide a review of the most significant decisions impacting design professionals. The cases will consider the following important issues: the effect contractual language has on a professional...more

Rogers Towers: New Law Alters Liability for Architects and Engineers

Of recent interest to architects, engineers and owners, Governor Scott signed into law an act relating to design professionals which limit their individual liability in certain circumstances. The new statute created by this...more

Owners of Multifamily Housing Beware

Owners and developers of multifamily housing beware—you may be held responsible for your architect’s oversight. A growing number of state and federal courts are in universal agreement that owners and developers cannot sue...more

Owner and Developer Implied Duties in Construction Projects

Increasing construction activity and the general improvement in the real estate market means that more owners and developers will be starting new construction projects, and it is important to review some of the obligations...more

New Florida Statute Allows Limitation of Design Professional Liability

Over the past fourteen years, third parties have been able to maintain a direct negligence cause of action against an individual design professional, such as an architect or engineer, arising out a construction project,...more

What Architects & Engineers Need to Know about the New Lien Law

I have previously discussed the ABCs of Lien Laws for those making claims on a project (that is, architects, engineers, contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers) and the 123s of Lien Laws for project owners. Now, time to...more

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