Construction Defects

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2 Investigators: Inspectors Missed Major Condo Defects, Suit Says (IL)

A couple buying their first new home together relied on a private home inspector, city building inspectors and a warranty that came with their new $600,000 condo.  But as CBS 2 Investigator Pam Zekman found, none of that protected them

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Developers’ Rights Decisions: Puzzling, Perturbing, and Problematic

Litigation is unpredictable. That’s no surprise to anyone who fights court battles regularly. It is also a theme reflected in three recent court decisions dealing with developer rights.  In the first case, Condominiums at Lilac Lane v. Monument Garden, LLC,

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National homebuilder to pay Miami-Dade condo association $11M in settlement

National homebuilder D.R. Horton agreed to pay a bankrupt Miami Gardens condominium association $11 million to settle litigation after the judge previously found the developer engaged in “deceptive practices.”  The settlement between Fort Worth, Texas-based D.R. Horton (NYSE: DHI) and

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Minnesota Legislature Revises Minnesota Common Interest Ownership Act

In recent years, very few condominium projects have been developed in Minnesota despite strong demand from potential condominium homeowners. Many developers attribute their reluctance to build condominiums to litigation risk and difficulty obtaining insurance and financing for condominium developments at

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Condo owners awarded $9M in suit against Hovnanian (NY)

A group of condominium owners has been awarded $9 million in a lawsuit against builder Hovnanian over construction problems at a six-story building on the Hudson Riverfront.  Lawyers representing the condo owners said jury verdict against Red Bank-based Hovnanian Enterprises,

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Issues That Cross State Lines: A Look at Condo Legislation Trends

When it comes to legislation and legal issues that apply to condo associations, co-ops, and other multifamily housing models, the focus is often local—city ordinances, council meetings, and so forth – but there are judgments handed down and bills passed

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Why you need to check with the HOA about building defects before buying that condo

I am planning to buy a condominium, which is part of a homeowner association (HOA). I observed that a couple of units have exterior issues. It looks like bubbles are in the siding. However, the unit I am looking at

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Condo owners allege dozens of construction defects at Artecity in Miami Beach (FL)

In 2011, the Artecity complex of condominiums near Collins Park in Miami Beach was completed, despite the developer filing for bankruptcy amid an avalanche of lawsuits. Six years later, the unit owners are now taking the developer, Artecity Park LLC,

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Supreme Court Rules in Vallagio: No Amendment for You! (CO)

This week, the Colorado Supreme Court announced Vallagio at Inverness Residential Condo. Ass’n v. Metro. Homes, Inc., 2017 CO 69, holding (1) the Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act (“CCIOA”) permits a developer–declarant to retain the right of consent to amend

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Five months later and warrantied builder issues still not resolved (IL)

Many regular Help Squad readers are likely familiar by now with the saga of a group of Naperville Carillon Club active senior living community homeowners whose issues I’ve been documenting since early March. In my last column on this topic,

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Supreme Court Affirms Declarant Consent Required for Removal of Arbitration Provision for Construction Defect Claims

On June 5, 2017, the Colorado Supreme Court issued its ruling in Vallagio at Inverness Residential Condominium Ass’n, Inc. v. Metropolitan Homes, Inc. et al. (Supreme Court Case No. 15SC508).  The Supreme Court affirmed the court of appeals and ruled:

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Supreme Court makes landmark ruling for condo developers (CO)

The Colorado Supreme Court on Monday upheld the right of condominium developers to require disputes go to binding arbitration, essentially putting into state law a contentious provision that construction-defects reform advocates said was the key to reviving a largely defunct

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Colorado Supreme Court gives a boost to builders in construction defects battles

The Colorado Supreme Court gave builders a reason to cheer Monday, ruling that a homeowners association in Centennial was wrong to ignore a requirement that it first get consent from the developer before changing the way disputes over construction defects

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Another Illinois Case Decides When an Asset Purchaser is Responsible for Liabilities as a Mere Continuation of the Seller

In our Risk Management Update of December 23, 2015, we discussed an Illinois case that had to decide when a successor entity purchasing the assets of its predecessor became liable for the debts of the predecessor. (“Mere Continuation” Doctrine Applied

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Minnesota amends its construction defect laws

Earlier this month we told you that (click here to see the story) about an effort to amend Minnesota’s construction-defect laws, which are among the most stringent in the nation, with a raft of amendments aimed at making it more

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Disney-Built Community Faces Serious Construction Deficiencies (FL)

The November 16, 2016 issue of the Wall Street Journal ran an article about Celebration, Florida, which is the master-planned community built by The Walt Disney Company in 1996. The title of the article summarized the state of affairs in

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Construction Defect Reform in CO; HB 1279: Pluses, Pitfalls & Practical Pointers

Construction defect litigation reform will take a small step forward this week when Gov. John Hickenlooper signs HB 1279 on May 23, 2017. HB 1279 will go into effect immediately after signature by the Governor, and developers and residential builders

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Shoddy condo construction lawsuits in Colorado just got harder to file, but that doesn’t mean development slumber is over (CO)

Declaring that the measure “will help make our housing more affordable,” Gov. John Hickenlooper on Tuesday signed into law one of the most hard-fought compromises of the 2017 session — a bill that will make it more difficult to sue

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Compromise Bill on Construction Defects is Ready for Governor Signature (CO)

On May 4, 2017, House Bill 17-1279 gained final unanimous approval in the Senate after unanimous approval in the House on April 24, 2017. H.B. 17-1279 has been referred to Governor John Hickenlooper to be signed into law.  H.B. 17-1279

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Legislature’s changes to construction-defect laws could help condo developers (MN)

Several much-anticipated changes to Minnesota’s construction-defect laws are closer to the governor’s pen.  The amendments to House File 1538 received bipartisan support and went to a conference committee for House and Senate members to hash out differences.  The current, long-standing

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Homebuilders and Contractors Beware: Construction Defect Claims May Be Filed More Than 10 Years After Construction is Complete (FL)

A statute of repose sets a firm deadline by which a lawsuit may be filed after the occurrence of a particular event. Once the statute expires, a prospective defendant is no longer exposed to legal action. Florida has a ten-year

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Senate committee gives unanimous OK to bipartisan construction litigation reform bill (CO)

Bipartisan legislation to make it more difficult for homeowners’ associations to sue condominium developers for defective construction is one step closer to becoming law after winning unanimous approval from a Senate committee Monday on its first vote in the upper

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Fortis not responsible for $2M in defects caused by prior developer, judge says in ruling against 20 Bayard Street residents (NY)

A court decision in Brooklyn last week will let Fortis Property Group get away with selling allegedly faulty condominiums in Williamsburg, for the simple reason that Fortis wasn’t the one that built them in the first place.  When developer Isaac

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Construction defects homeowner consent bill breezes through Colorado House

A measure requiring that a majority of homeowners in a condo complex first approve a construction defects action against a builder — rather than just the association board — passed the Colorado House Monday and now moves on to the

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Owner Approval for a Construction Defect Lawsuit?

On March 17, 2017, House Bill 17-1279 was introduced and assigned to the State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee. The original intent of H.B. 17-1279 was to open the lines of communication between the association board, the association members, and

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Grande Pointe residents file suit against DR Horton (FL)

When Chris Smith bought his home in the Grande Pointe neighborhood in Inlet Beach in 2010, he believed he was buying into a neighborhood where all the homes would be a Coastal Cottage architectural style — at least that was

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Lawmakers announce breakthrough on construction defects reform measure (CO)

Lawmakers at the state Capitol say they have finally reached a compromise over a contentious construction defects reform bill that requires a majority of homeowners in a condominium complex — not just the homeowner association board — give consent to

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Spring Isle Community Association Inc. alleges units have defects (FL)

A community association alleges an Orange County corporation failed to reasonably and adequately plan, develop, design and/or construct a community.  Spring Isle Community Association Inc. filed a complaint on March 2 in the 9th Judicial Circuit Court of Florida –

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Hundreds of Daybreak residents file lawsuits claiming defects in homes (UT)

Kori Emerson lives in a master-planned community, a carefully designed neighborhood she says turned out to be more like a movie set than a permanent place to live.  “It looks great, but it is not meant to last.”  Emerson is

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Aurora HOA wins $13.5 million award in dispute with Texas homebuilder

A homeowners association in Aurora has received an arbitration award of $13.5 million in a dispute with D.R. Horton Inc., according to a statement from the HOA’s attorneys, Benson, Kerrane, Storz & Nelson PC.  The HOA for The Conservatory neighborhood,

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Senate Committee Issues Favorable Report On Bill To Preclude Developers From Limiting Condo Owners Claims (MD)

The Maryland Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee has issued a favorable report on legislation, which has already been passed by the House of Delegates, intended to protect condominium owners’ rights with regard to bringing construction defect claims against the project’s developer.

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CBC INVESTIGATES Structural weakness, coercion, and duress: a condo project goes off the rails

Imagine paying hundreds of thousands of dollars for a bungalow condominium close to a river and a golf course, only to learn city building inspectors think your new condo could face structural failure.  Then imagine learning the developer faced 56

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Insurance Policy Did Not Prevent Association Recovery from Subcontractors for Defective Work

On February 17, the First District Appellate Court issued an opinion regarding the Implied Warranty of Habitability in the case of Sienna Court Condominium Association v. Champion Aluminum Court et al. The opinion involved three separate appeals: the first relating

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Sponsors again delay hearing on bipartisan construction defects bill, say negotiations ongoing (CO)

Lawmakers late Tuesday pushed back a scheduled Wednesday committee hearing on a bipartisan construction defects reform bill, saying negotiations involving critical issues are still unresolved.  Groups representing builders and homeowners have been facing off for years over attempts to rewrite

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

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

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Democratic lawmakers, business leaders reach impasse on construction defects legislation (CO)

Construction-defects reform legislation hit a snag as frustrated Democrats accused a group of business leaders and affordable housing advocates of throwing up roadblocks to a bipartisan bill that had been set for its first hearing Wednesday, but a spokesman for

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San Francisco Millennium Tower HOA Files New Lawsuit Over Sinking Skyscraper (CA)

Lawyers representing the sinking San Francisco Millennium Tower homeowners’ association announced a lawsuit against the developer and builders Wednesday.  The lawsuit names the developer, Millennium Partners, along with the Transbay Joint Powers Authority (TJPA), the regional agency overseeing the building

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House of Delegates Passes Bill To Preclude Condo Developers From Limiting Owners Construction Defect Claims (MD)

By a vote of 136-0, the Maryland House of Delegates approved a bill to protect condominium owners’ rights with regard to bringing construction defect claims against the project’s developer. House Bill 676 would prevent condominium developers from limiting the ability

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Colorado finally corrects thirty-year old flaw in construction defect statute of repose

The Colorado Supreme Court has finally settled a decades-old conundrum surrounding the state’s construction defect statute of repose.  A statute of repose is similar to a statute of limitations insofar as both restrict the time a party can bring a

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Why Colorado lawmakers hope this is the year to solve the affordable condo crisis

This much perhaps everyone can agree on: Colorado is in an affordable housing crisis, whether you live on the Front Range, Western Slope or the Eastern Plains. Affordable housing is almost a myth, with rents in Denver for a one-bedroom

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HOA in Daybreak files lawsuit against homebuilders (UT)

Leaky roofs, leaky windows and damage to insulation: just some of the problems homeowners in a Daybreak neighborhood are dealing with. Now the HOA has decided to sue the builders of the nearly 10-year-old homes.  Kori and Mason Emerson were

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Homeowner consent bill introduced in House as latest salvo in construction defects battle (CO)

Yet another attempt to reform Colorado’s construction defects statute has been introduced in the legislature, this time a bipartisan bill that would require majority approval by homeowners to initiate a legal action against a builder rather than leaving that decision

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Lawmakers introduce bipartisan compromise bill to tackle construction defects issues (CO)

A bipartisan group of legislators introduced a compromise bill late Friday aimed at encouraging developers to build condominium projects while preserving the right of homeowners to have their day in court.  The legislation arrives at the end of a week

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Colorado construction-defects reform centerpiece assigned to ‘kill committee’ (CO)

House Speaker Crisanta Duran assigned the business community’s centerpiece construction-defects reform bill late Tuesday to the so-called “kill committee,” disappointing backers and sponsors of Senate Bill 156 and refocusing efforts on a yet-to-be-introduced successor bill that deals with fewer of

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Death of Democratic construction-defects bill refocuses effort on comprehensive reform (CO)

A Colorado Senate committee on Monday killed a construction-defects reform bill described by its author as a compromise measure to untangle the state’s year’s long battle over laws that many argue thwarting new development of affordable multi-family housing in Colorado.

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Construction Defects and Insurance: Proactive Steps to Protect Your Community

All the media and legislative talk of construction defect litigation and its impact on condominium construction in Colorado may seem like discussion that does not impact existing communities. But the changes to state and local laws concerning construction defect litigation

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

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.  SB 800,

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Mayors campaign for construction defects bill (CO)

While mayors around the metro area are backing a state legislative effort restricting construction defects lawsuits that they say discourage the building of attainable housing — such as condominiums and townhomes — critics say it would take away a homeowner’s

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Poor Workmanship Tops List of Construction Defects in New Report From Community Associations Institute (CAI)

The majority of construction deficiencies occur in new condominium developments compared to townhomes and single family homes, according to a new study released today by Community Associations Institute (CAI), the leading authority in community association education, governance, and management.  The

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Plaintiffs in $4.7 million construction defect case mum after ruling

Plaintiffs in a major construction lawsuit that ended with a San Diego law firm recovering nearly $5 million have decided to stay silent after the ruling was in their favor.  The law firm, which represented Laurel Bay Community Association, won

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