Construction Defects

News & Analysis as of

Indecent Exposure: New Decision Confirms Subcontractors Liability To CD Damages Is Expansive

How broad is a “broad-form” indemnity provision in a construction contract? A recent decision by the Arizona Court of Appeals has held such a provision allows a developer great latitude in recovering monies paid for...more

Reading the Crystal Ball: Reservation of Rights Letters under South Carolina Law in the Wake of Harleysville Group Insurance v....

The South Carolina Supreme Court recently took a firm stance on what constitutes a sufficient reservation of rights letter in Harleysville Group Insurance v. Heritage Communities, Inc., et al., — S.E.2d — , No. 2013-001281,...more

Seventh Circuit Finds Faulty Work Not a Covered “Occurrence”

In Allied Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. v. Metro North Condo. Ass’n, No. 16-1868, 2017 U.S. App. LEXIS 4107 (7th Cir. Mar. 8, 2017), the Seventh Circuit had occasion to consider whether claims of faulty workmanship could constitute...more

Economic Damages and the Right to Repair Act: You Can’t Have it Both Ways

In 2002, the California State Legislature passed Senate Bill 800 also known as the Right to Repair Act (Civil Code Sections 895 et seq.) in an effort to stem a then rising tide in residential construction defect litigation....more

Construction Defect – Strict Compliance with Right to Repair Response Deadline Required

A residential builder must assert insufficiency of claimant’s notice within 14 days under the California Right to Repair Act also known as SB 800. William Blanchette, et al. v. The Superior Court of Imperial...more

California Court Of Appeals Holds Builder Must Respond To Notice of Claim Under The Right to Repair Act Within Statutory Period...

In William Blanchette v. The Superior Court of Imperial County [D070545, 2/20/17], the California Court of Appeals strictly construed the statutory requirement that a builder respond to a notice of claim of defects under the...more

Construction Defect – Application of the Right to Repair Statute to Material Suppliers

The Right to Repair Statute in California requires a homeowner show a breach of contract or negligence to succeed. Acqua Vista Homeowners Association v. MWI, Inc. - California Court of Appeals, Fourth Appellate...more

Bills Proposed in Maryland General Assembly to Limit Restrictions Imposed By Condominium Developers on the Ability of the Council...

Proposed legislation now pending in the Maryland General Assembly would prevent condominium developers from limiting the ability of the council of unit owners and individual unit owners to bring construction defect claims for...more

Contractor not liable following tunnel collapse

A recent Scottish case absolved a contractor from liability for the collapse of a tunnel as part of a hydroelectric scheme. This was because the contractor exercised reasonable skill and care, and did not guarantee the...more

Virginia Supreme Court Holds That Subcontractors Did Not Waive Statute of Limitations, With The Result That The General Contractor...

Hensel Phelps Constr. Co. v. Thompson Masonry Contractor, Inc., et. al., No. 151780, 2016 Va. LEXIS 166 (Va. Nov. 3, 2016) - The dispute arose from the construction of a student health and fitness center at Virginia...more

California Court Holds Continuous Progressive Injury Exclusion Applicable to Construction Defect Claim

In its recent decision in Saarman Construction, Ltd. v. Ironshore Specialty Ins. Co., 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 13633 (N.D. Cal. Jan 31, 2017), the United States District Court for the Northern District of California had occasion...more

Maryland Federal Court Approves Residential Sales Contract Provision Creating a One-Year Period of Limitations

In Daniels v. NVR, Inc., t/a Ryan Homes, the United States District Court for the District of Maryland upheld the validity of a contractual provision in a residential home purchase agreement that reduced the normal period of...more

Arizona Court of Appeals Rules That Coverage for an Additional Insured is no Greater Than Coverage Afforded a Named Insured - -...

In a matter of first impression, the Arizona Court of Appeals recently ruled that the “Your Work Exclusion” in a Commercial General Liability (“CGL”) insurance policy bars coverage for an additional insured when the only...more

Court Finds No Occurrence for Installation of Defective flooring and Explains Coverage for Attorney Fee Awards

In Navigators Specialty Ins. Co. v. Moorefield Const. (No.G050759, filed 12/27/16), a California appeals court held that the knowing installation of flooring over a vapor-emitting slab was not an accident or occurrence,...more

Homebuilder Guaranty Fund Claims, an Informal Way for Home Purchasers to File Claims Against Homebuilders

If someone who purchases a home believes their home was improperly constructed, they may file a claim against the Homebuilder Guarantee Fund to recover any monetary losses they suffer. In order to recover from the...more

Oregon High Court Clarifies How To Read the Four Corners of a Complaint

On December 8, 2016, the Oregon Supreme Court issued a decision, West Hills Development Co. v. Chartis Claims, Inc., 360 Or. 650 (2016), clarifying what allegations in a construction defect suit will implicate coverage under...more

Florida, Sebo and the Concurrent Causation Doctrine

The Florida Supreme Court recently issued a widely reported decision, Sebo v. American Home Assurance Co., which applied the concurrent cause doctrine in ruling that an all-risk homeowner’s insurance policy provides coverage...more

Under Construction - December 2016

Welcome to the winter 2016 edition of our Under Construction newsletter. We hope your year has been good to your family, your company and you as we wrap up these remaining few weeks of 2016. A recent hot topic with...more

Competing Causes of Loss: Florida Supreme Court Issues Decision Applying The Concurrent Causation Doctrine

We have discussed on a number of occasions the issue of causation when there are multiple causes of loss, some covered and some not covered. Most jurisdictions apply what is known as the efficient proximate cause analysis...more

Florida’s Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Concurrent Cause Doctrine; Reverses Second District’s Application of Efficient Proximate...

In John Robert Sebo, etc. v. American Home Assurance Company, Inc., Supreme Court case number SC14-897, the Florida Supreme Court reversed a Second District Court opinion which found the efficient proximate cause doctrine...more

Florida Supreme Court Decides that Concurrent Causes Equal Coverage

It’s said that “defeat is an orphan,” but insurable losses often have multiple, concurrent causes. In some cases, one or more of those causes might be outside the scope of coverage, either by omission or exclusion. In Sebo v....more

Montana Supreme Court Holds Co-Insurer Breached Duty to Defend

In its recent decision in J & C Moodie Properties, LLC v. Deck, 2016 MT 301 (Mont. Nov. 22, 2016), the Supreme Court of Montana had occasion to consider what constitutes a breach of an insurer’s duty to defend in a...more

New Appellate Ruling Increases Residential Builders' Exposure to Defect Liability in Illinois

Illinois law on the implied warranty of habitability (IWH) is continuously changing, and residential builders should take notice of a new opinion issued by the Appellate Court, First District, on October 26 in a construction...more

Non-delegable duties of architects and main contractors in construction claims - A case study of MCST Plan No. 3322 v Tiong Aik...

In MCST Plan No. 3322 v Tiong Aik Construction Pte Ltd and Another [2016] SGCA 40, the Singapore Court of Appeal (CA) held that architects and main contractors are not subject to a non-delegable duty in tort to ensure that...more

Dispute an expert's jurisdiction appointed to provide expert determination?

In the recent decision of Zvi Construction Co LLC v. Notre Dame University (USA) in England [2016] EWHC 1924, the Technology and Construction Court (TCC) had to consider whether a party had expressly or impliedly accepted the...more

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