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Construction Defect Statute of Repose: Post-Closing Punch-List Work ay Delay its Start

May 4, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

Florida’s Fifth District Court of Appeals is shaking up the construction defect statute of repose once again.[1] A recent 5th DCA opinion implies that the 10-year construction defect statute of repose does not start to run at the closing of a purchase of a newly-constructed home if there remains punch-list work to complete after closing.

House Bill 377 Clarifies Date of Completion of the Contract for Statute of Repose—a Legislative Win for Contractors

April 27, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

On March 30, 2017, the Florida House of Representatives unanimously passed House Bill 377. The Bill is still working its way through the Senate, but has received a favorable response and is predicted to pass. If it becomes law, HB 377 will amend the construction defect statute of repose to clarify that the “date of completion of the contract” is the date that final payment becomes due.

Construction Defects and Insurance Coverage: When is the Duty to Defend Triggered?

April 3, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

In Florida, an insurance company may have a duty to defend and/or indemnify its insured. The insurance company’s duty to defend its insured (as in defending the insured in a lawsuit) is broader than its duty to indemnify (as in paying for damages caused by the insured). The duty to defend is separate and apart from the duty to indemnify.

The Most Common Commercial Construction Contract Issues: Part I

March 31, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

When entering into a commercial construction contract to build a commercial building, landowners should be aware of certain contract issues that can cause future legal problems. This article is designed to address some of the more common issues seen in commercial construction contracts, and what landowners should pay attention to before entering into any contracts for the construction of a commercial building.

Design Professional Liability: Does Your Contract Protect You?

February 27, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

Under Florida law, individual design professionals can be held liable for professional negligence, even if they did not personally contract for the professional services. Moransais v. Heathman. Moreover, Florida’s statutes governing engineering, architecture and geology make clear that individual design professionals are not automatically absolved of liability simply because they are not parties to a contract.

Construction Project Delivery Methods – Part II

February 21, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

There are many options for a contractor to deliver a project to a commercial owner. As with each different project, the delivery method can change to suit the needs of the parties. Careful attention should be taken when analyzing which method works for the particular project. Each of these various project delivery methods carry differing risks for the parties involved (i.e. owner, contractor, subcontractors, etc.). This two-part blog discusses some of most common project delivery methods for commercial construction projects. Part I discussed Design Build methods and Construction Manager at Risk. This part II will address some trending project delivery methods.

Performance Bond Claims: Strict Compliance with the Bond Language is Required

February 10, 2017 Construction Industry Legal Blog

Performance bonds on a construction project can be a valuable asset. However, the language of the bond may be filled with traps for the unwary. A bond obligee must be careful to strictly comply with the bond language, or else the bond protection may be lost—which can be a very bad thing. A recent case, Arch Ins. Co. v. John Moriarty & Associates of Florida, Inc., 15-22403-CIV, 2016 WL 7324144 (S.D. Fla. Dec. 12, 2016), highlights how a bond obligee can lose its bond protection by failing to strictly comply with the bond language… and it cost the bond obligee One Million Dollars. Failure to understand and strictly comply with the bond language can be costly.

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