Construction Defects

News & Analysis as of

Insurer’s Potential Exposure to Fees and Costs When Prosecuting Indemnity Action under Assignment from Insured

Hearn Pacific Corporation v. Second Generation Roofing, Inc. - Court of Appeal, First Appellate District (May 2, 2016) - It is not uncommon in construction defect and some other cases for an insurer of the general...more

Construction Defect Debate to be Heard by Colorado Supreme Court

The construction defects case of Vallagio at Inverness Residential Condominium Association, Inc. v. Metropolitan Homes, Inc., et al. has garnered national attention since the Colorado Court of Appeals' decision in May 2015,...more

Contractual Waiver of Subrogation Applied to Owner’s Non-Work Property

After an insurer pays for a covered loss by an owner under a property policy the insurer generally has the right, whether under the common law, statute or the policy itself, to seek recovery of the payment from the...more

Common Law Indemnity Claim Affirmed on Justifiable Beliefs

Yesterday, the Arizona Court of Appeals issued an interesting opinion in Hatch Development v. Solomon. Hatch illustrated two key points in real estate and construction litigation: (1) a contractor’s indemnity does not always...more

Florida Court Enforces Four Year Statute of Limitations For Work Performed by Window Installer

In Brock v. Garner Window & Door Sales, Inc., 187 So. 3d 294 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App., 2016), plaintiffs, Lawrence and Laura Brock (“Plaintiffs”) sued the contractor that installed windows on their home after they sustained water...more

Oregon Court of Appeals Holds that “Common Issue” Exception Applies to Permit Defendant Contractor to Recover Attorney’s Fees From...

In The Village at North Pointe Condominiums Association v. Bloedel Construction Co. et al., 278 Or App 354 (2016), the Oregon Court of Appeals held that defendant contractor could recover attorneys’ fees against a homeowners...more

Under Construction - June 2016

Welcome to the June 2016 edition of our Under Construction newsletter. Hope you are staying cool this summer. Are you legally operating your drone on the construction site? In our Winter 2015 Under Construction...more

Section 489.128 - Unlicensed Window Installation Contractor Avoids Construction Defect Claims Based On Florida's Statute Of...

Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeal recently considered a window installation contractor’s defense to a homeowners' construction defect claims based on the statute of limitations. The homeowners argued that the four-year...more

Arbitrators Have Inherent Authority To Award Punitive Damages

In RV V Lockworks, LLC v. Five Yale & Towne, LLC, 2016 Conn. Super. LEXIS 563 (Conn. Super. Ct. Mar. 16, 2016) an arbitrator awarded punitive damages to the purchaser of a newly-constructed 300-unit apartment complex when it...more

Insurer’s Attempt to Shift Cost of Defense to Another Insurer Found Void as to Public Policy

While construction can sometimes be risky, construction litigation is almost always expensive. This volatile mix of risk and expense has made risk shifting, through indemnity and insurance, a primary goal and concern by those...more

Defects during the project life cycle: FIDIC and UAE law

Defects affect construction projects throughout their life-cycle – from design to construction to use. UAE law and the FIDIC Red Book, the most common form of construction contract adopted in the UAE, have numerous provisions...more

Residential Builders Prevail in Illinois Supreme Court Decision, Also Benefiting Homebuyers

The Illinois Supreme Court’s May 19 decision in Fattah v. Bim represents a significant victory for residential construction companies and will also benefit homebuyers. In its decision, the Court unanimously defined a common...more

Minnesota Supreme Court Addresses SOL in Construction Defect Suit

In the case of 328 Barry Avenue, LLC v. Nolan Properties Group, LLC, 871 N.W.2d 745 (Minn. 2015), the Supreme Court of Minnesota considered the statute of limitations under Minn. Stat. § 541.051, subd. 1, for actions “arising...more

Construction Defect Insurance Disputes Are Daunting Puzzles, But Neutrals Fit the Pieces Together

Think construction defects cases are complicated? Try looking at them from the perspective of the neutrals who guide parties to settlement. Complicated only begins to describe what one experienced neutral calls working on a...more

ABA Section of Litigation Regional CLE Workshop on Handling a Construction Failures Case Scheduled for June 3, 2016

The ABA has scheduled a half-day Regional CLE Workshop on Handling a Construction Failures Case for Friday, June 3, 2016, at Pepper Hamilton LLP’s offices at 3000 Two Logan Square, 18th & Arch Streets, Philadelphia, PA....more

Insurance Review May 2016

It has been another active year for class action and mass tort litigation in Australia, with seemingly very few industries or sectors immune, even the legal industry upon which this burgeoning area of the law has been built....more

Montana Supreme Court Revisits General Liability Coverage for Construction Defect Claims

In its recent decision in Emplrs Mut. Cas. Co. v. Fisher Builders, Inc., 2016 MT 91 (Mont. Apr. 16, 2016), the Supreme Court of Montana had occasion to consider what constitutes an “occurrence” in the context of a defective...more

Standing tall – The “Independent Contractor” defence for builders and construction professionals

The High Court has recently ruled that main contractors and architects may rely on the independent contractor defence to defeat claims in negligence brought by management corporations. The court’s inquiry focused on whether...more

A Double Standard in Construction Defect Coverage Cases?

The recent decision of Allied Property & Casualty Insurance Co. v. Metro North Condominium Associates highlights why only a minority of jurisdictions still hold to the fiction that construction defects cannot give rise to an...more

California Appeals Court Rejects Insurer’s Reliance on Contractual Escape Clause

According to a closely watched decision, an “other insurance” clause in a comprehensive general liability policy will not, as a matter of public policy, permit the insurer to avoid having to pay a share of the insured’s...more

How to Protect Yourself Against Surprise Parties to Contracts

If a party breaches a contract, under classic contract law, typically only the parties to the agreement have the right to enforce its terms. Yet courts are increasingly granting third parties the right to enforce a contract,...more

West Coast Real Estate Update: April 2016 #1

Residential Communities: Calderon Process for HOAs Likely to Be Extended Again - The California Assembly Committee on Judiciary in early April unanimously passed Assembly Bill (AB) 1963 to extend the pre-litigation...more

California Court Rejects Primary Carrier’s Excess Other Insurance Position

In its recent decision in Certain Underwriters at Lloyds, London v. Arch Specialty Ins. Co., 2016 Cal. App. LEXIS 275 (Cal. App. Apr. 11, 2016), the Court of Appeal of California for the Third Appellate District had occasion...more

Kentucky Court of Appeals Denies CGL Coverage For Damage To Property Other Than Insured’s Work

In Acuity v. Martin/Elias Props., LLC, 2016 Ky. App. Unpub. LEXIS 237 (Ky. Ct. App. Mar. 25, 2016), the Court of Appeals of Kentucky held that commercial general liability insurer Acuity did not owe coverage for a claim that...more

Fourth Circuit Finds Availability Of Class Arbitration Is Question For Courts, Not Arbitrators

Joining the Sixth and Third Circuit Courts of Appeals, the Fourth Circuit this week held that “whether an arbitration clause permits class arbitration is a gateway question of arbitrability for the court.” Dell Web...more

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