Category Archives for "Court Decisions"

Jarlstrom v. Oregon Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying Board, by Arthur Schwartz

An Oregon man who was investigated and fined by a state board for unlicensed practice of engineering has filed a lawsuit in federal court alleging the state’s definition of an engineer violates the First Amendment. Mats Jarlstrom, 56, was fined $500 after identifying himself as an engineer in emails he sent to Beaverton officials challenging […]

Continue reading

Balfour Beatty Infrastructure, Inc. v. Rummel, Klepper & Kahl, LLP, by Arthur Schwartz

In Balfour Beatty Infrastructure, Inc. v. Rummel Klepper & Kahl, LLP, the Maryland Court of Appeals confirmed that the Economic Loss Rule is alive and well in Maryland. NSPE and other design professional organizations filed a “friend of the court” brief in support of the rule. Generally, the Economic Loss Rule prevents parties from asserting […]

Continue reading

Issue: Is a contractor’s deliberate decision to install flooring, despite knowing that the underlying slab was still emitting a high level of moisture, an “occurrence” that is covered under a commercial general liability insurance policy? Navigators Specialty Insurance Company v. Moorefield Construction, Inc. Court of Appeal of California, Fourth Appellate District (2016), by Hugh Anderson

Summary: Construction of a Best Buy store in Visalia, California. Based on test results, the contractor, Moorefield, knew that the concrete floor was emitting high amounts of moisture at the time that vinyl and carpet floor tiles were ready to be installed. The specifications did not allow such installation to occur until the moisture levels […]

Continue reading

Issue: Contractual allocation of risk regarding underground facilities. J.F. Allen Corporation v. Sanitary Board of City of Charleston, West Virginia. Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia (2016), by Hugh Anderson

Summary: $5 million municipal sewer project. J.F. Allen, the contractor, brought a breach of contract claim against the owner, alleging that during construction the contractor encountered 122 unmarked or mismarked underground  utilities, resulting in delay and additional costs, and also contending that the owner allowed other contractors to conduct work that interfered with Allen’s work. […]

Continue reading

Issue: Contractor’s obligation to comply with recommendations in a geotechnical report, and entitlement to rely on a change order issued in response to a request for clarification. Maines Paper & Food Service, Inc. v. The Pike Co., Inc. Appellate Division, Third Department, New York (2016), by Hugh Anderson

Summary: The contractor, The Pike Co., constructed a supermarket in Ithaca, New York. After completion the floor of the new building settled substantially. The owner, Maines, sued the contractor for breach of contract and breach of warranty. The owner had provided a copy of the geotechnical report for the project to the contractor. The report […]

Continue reading

Issue: Enforceability of liquidated damages of $700/day. Boone Coleman Construction, Inc., v. Village of Piketon, Ohio. Supreme Court of Ohio (2016), by Hugh Anderson

Summary: The EJCDC case summary of February 2015 reviewed the Ohio Court of Appeals decision in this case, noting that the case had been appealed to the Ohio Supreme Court. The 2016 decision of the Ohio Supreme Court reverses the Court of Appeals decision. The case arises from a modest public works project for construction […]

Continue reading

Is a general contractor an innocent “seller” of building materials entitled to protection under the Texas Products Liability Act? Centerpoint Builders GP, LLC v. Trussway, Ltd. Supreme Court of Texas (2016), by Hugh Anderson

Centerpoint was the general contractor on an apartment building project. Centerpoint purchased roof trusses directly from the manufacturer, Trussway. During construction a truss had been set in place but not yet installed. A worker retained by a subcontractor crossed the truss carrying gypsum wallboard. The truss broke, and the worker was rendered a paraplegic by […]

Continue reading

Whether a subcontractor is bound by a price proposal submitted to a general contractor, in a situation in which negotiations regarding price and subcontract terms take place after the proposal is submitted. C.G. Schmidt, Inc., v. Permasteelisa North America. United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit (2016), by Hugh Anderson

C.G. Schmidt (CGS) was a candidate to be the general contractor on an 18-story office building project in Milwaukee. CGS’s initial proposal to the owner was based in part on a $12 million sub-bid for the building’s curtain wall, by Permasteelisa North America (PNA). CGS and PNA refrained from entering  into a subcontract while CGS […]

Continue reading

What is the duration of a payment bond? Maschmeyer Concrete Company of Florida v. American Southern Insurance Company. United States District Court, Middle District, Florida (2016), by Hugh Anderson

The City of Orlando solicited bids for concrete repair and construction. The initial term of the contract was one year, but the City could renew the contract for additional terms up to five years total. The contractor was required to provide a payment bond. The payment bond that the contractor furnished contained an express warning […]

Continue reading