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    Local # 0740
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    Salem, CT 06420

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    Local # 0780
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    Local # 0710
    110 Brook St
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    Building Consultant News and Information
    For Fairfield Connecticut


    U.K. Construction Unexpectedly Strengthens for a Second Month

    Construction Injuries Under the Privette Doctrine. An Electrifying, but Perhaps Not Particularly Shocking, Story . . .

    Changes to Pennsylvania Mechanic’s Lien Code

    DE Confirms Robust D&O Protection Despite Company Demise

    Lost Rental Income not a Construction Defect

    New Jersey Appellate Court Reinstates Asbestos Action

    Virginia Decision Emphasizes Importance of Naming All Necessary Parties

    A Year Later, Homeowners Still Repairing Damage from Sandy

    D.R. Horton Earnings Rise as Sales and Order Volume Increase

    Fed. Judge Blocks Release of Records on FIU Bridge Collapse, Citing NTSB Investigation

    After Sixty Years, Subcontractors are Back in the Driver’s Seat in Bidding on California Construction Projects

    Why Is California Rebuilding in Fire Country? Because You’re Paying for It

    TLSS Partner Burks Smith and Associate Katie Keller Win Summary Judgment on Late Reported Water Seepage Case in South Florida

    Harmon Towers Case to Last into 2014

    Know When Your Claim “Accrues” or Risk Losing It

    Irene May Benefit Construction Industry

    William Lyon to Acquire RSI Communities

    Caterpillar Said to Be Focus of Senate Overseas Tax Probe

    Eighth Circuit Affirms Judgment for Bad Faith after Insured's Home Destroyed by Fire

    Saudi Arabia Awards Contracts for Megacity Neom’s Worker Housing

    Additional Insured Not Entitled to Coverage for Post-Completion Defects

    LaGuardia Airport Is a Mess. An Engineer-Turned-Fund Manager Has a Fix

    Engineers Propose 'River' Alternative to Border Wall

    Client Alert: Release of Liability Agreement Extinguishes Duty of Ordinary Care

    Texas Approves Law Ensuring Fair and Open Competition

    N.J. Governor Fires Staff at Authority Roiled by Patronage Hires

    Insurer Must Cover Portions of Arbitration Award

    Contractor Covered for Voluntary Remediation Efforts in Completed Homes

    Ownership is Not a Conclusive Factor for Ongoing Operations Additional Insured Coverage

    Hammer & Hand’s Top Ten Predictions for US High Performance Building in 2014

    Understanding Indiana’s New Home Construction Warranty Act

    Construction Industry on the Comeback, But It Won’t Be the Same

    RDU Terminal 1: Going Green

    Construction Firm Sues Town over Claims of Building Code Violations

    What is Toxic Mold Litigation?

    Homebuilding in Las Vegas Slows but Doesn’t Fall

    "Is the Defective Work Covered by Insurance?"

    Part II: Key Provisions of School Facility Construction & Design Contracts

    Water Leak Covered for First Thirteen Days

    Hawaii Supreme Court Finds Excess Can Sue Primary for Equitable Subrogation

    What If an Irma-Like Hurricane Hit the New York City Metro Area?

    Developer Transition – Washington DC Condominiums

    Owners Bound by Arbitration Clause on Roofing Shingles Packaging

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    Few Homes Available to Reno Buyers, Plenty of Commercial Properties

    Increases in U.S. Office Rents Led by San Jose and Dallas

    What You Need to Know About Additional Insured Endorsements

    Obtaining Temporary Injunction to Enforce Non-Compete Agreement

    Canada Home Resales Post First Fall in Eight Months
    Corporate Profile

    FAIRFIELD CONNECTICUT BUILDING CONSULTANT
    DIRECTORY AND CAPABILITIES

    The Fairfield, Connecticut Building Consultant Group at BHA, leverages from the experience gained through more than 5,500 construction related expert witness designations encompassing a wide spectrum of construction related disputes. Drawing from this considerable body of experience, BHA provides construction related trial support and expert services to Fairfield's most recognized construction litigation practitioners, commercial general liability carriers, owners, construction practice groups, as well as a variety of state and local government agencies.

    Building Consultant News & Info
    Fairfield, Connecticut

    Ten Firm Members Recognized as Super Lawyers or Rising Stars

    September 16, 2019 —
    While we avoid using this blog as a platform for self-promotion, long-time readers will know we make an exception to recognize the Super Lawyers of the firm, each of whom is humbled to receive this peer-rated award. Super Lawyers recognizes attorneys who have distinguished themselves in their legal practice as recognized by their peers. Attorneys are selected through a patented selection process combining peer nominations and independent research. Results are based on legal excellence, industry involvement, and civic leadership. Only five percent of lawyers in Washington State are selected for the honor of Super Lawyers, and no more than 2.5 percent are selected for the honor of Super Lawyers Rising Stars. John P. Ahlers, one of the firm’s founding partners, was again recognized as one of the Top 10 Lawyers out of all Washington lawyers. Founding partner Paul R. Cressman Jr. was again recognized as one of the 100-Best Lawyers considering Lawyers State of Washington wide. In addition, four other firm members are also recognized as Super Lawyers: Founding Partner Scott R. Sleight, Brett M. Hill, Bruce A. Cohen, and Lawrence S. Glosser. Partners Ryan W. Sternoff and Lindsay (Taft) Watkins, and associates Ceslie A. Blass and Scott D. MacDonald are all recognized as Super Lawyer Rising Stars, which recognizes attorneys either 40 years old or younger, or in practice 10 years or less. Read the court decision
    Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Ahlers Cressman & Sleight PLLC

    Quick Note: Independent Third-Party Spoliation Of Evidence Claim

    June 18, 2019 —
    In an earlier posting I discussed the difference between first-party spoliation of evidence and third-party spoliation of evidence. There is NO independent cause of action for first-party spoliation of evidence because that can be dealt with directly in the underlying lawsuit. This deals with the assertion that an actual party to a lawsuit spoiled evidence. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of David Adelstein, Kirwin Norris, P.A.
    Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at dma@kirwinnorris.com

    As the Term Winds Down, Several Important Regulatory Cases Await the U.S. Supreme Court

    September 03, 2019 —
    The Supreme Court will be deciding some very important regulatory law cases in the new few weeks as the term winds down. CERCLA Circled Last week, the Court granted a petition to review a significant CERCLA case, Atlantic Richfield Company v. Christian, et al., decided by the Supreme Court of Montana on state law grounds. This case involves state litigation which could result in a cleanup whose scope is allegedly inconsistent with an ongoing and expensive federal CERCLA cleanup at the Anaconda Smelter site. CERCLA basically provides that no one may challenge an ongoing Superfund cleanup, yet this state common law proceeding seeking a cleanup of the plaintiff’s homes and properties arguably threatens the EPA-approved cleanup remedy. ARCO filed a petition for certiorari with the Supreme Court, which the Court has now granted despite the Solicitor General’s brief which argued that the Court should wait to see the results of the Montana trial. (It is unusual for the Court to reject the advice of the Solicitor General.) Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Anthony B. Cavender, Pillsbury
    Mr. Cavender may be contacted at anthony.cavender@pillsburylaw.com

    No Rest for the Weary: Project Completion Is the Beginning of Litigation

    June 18, 2019 —
    In today’s environment, most construction projects end up in some form of litigation. Construction is full-time employment for lawyers – from contract negotiation to project management, lien and payment issues. Years after project completion, a company still can face construction defect litigation and be served with a Notice of Opportunity to Repair, which in most states is now codified into statute. This is the beginning of what most likely will become a lawsuit, involving many of the subcontractors. Watch Out for the Construction Contract Blame Game The first phase of post construction litigation involves the review of contract and insurance policy language in an attempt to transfer responsibility in the litigation to other parties. Before construction began, contract negotiation focused on budget and timeline. In the post-construction phase, two less noticed provisions of the contract are critical – indemnity and insurance. Reprinted courtesy of Albert Li & Bob Fitzsimmons, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved. Mr. Fitzsimmons may be contacted at rfitzsimmons@rumberger.com Mr. Li may be contacted at ali@rumberger.com Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of

    Endorsement Excludes Replacement of Undamaged Property with Matching Materials

    August 20, 2019 —
    The court approved the insurer's endorsement which stated the insured would not pay for undamaged property in order to match damaged property. Noonan v. Am. Family Mut. Ins. Co., 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 15545 (May 24, 2019). After hail and wind damaged part of the roof in the insureds' home, American Family inspected the roof and determined that it had suffered $12,000 in damage. The insureds disputed this amount and demanded an appraisal to provide a binding estimate of the amount of loss. American Family asked the appraisers to divide their estimate into two categories - one for replacing damaged shingles and another for replacing undamaged shingles that would not match those needed to replace the damaged ones. The appraisers did not do so. They instead found that replacing the entire roof would cost $141,000 and noted there was a matching issue because alternative products did not match the current shingles on the roof. Of the $141,000 needed to replace the entire roof, American Family estimated that $87,232.98 was due to the costs of matching. The insureds sued. The district court remanded the case to the appraisers to clarify the award by differentiating the costs attributable to the actual roof damage from those attributable to shingle matching. The appraisers clarified the award and reported that actual damages were $66,619, meaning that $74,381 was attributable to matching. American Family then paid the actual damages, less the deductible, but refused to pay the rest. Read the court decision
    Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Tred R. Eyerly, Damon Key Leong Kupchak Hastert
    Mr. Eyerly may be contacted at te@hawaiilawyer.com

    'Major' Mass. Gas Leak Follows Feds Call For Regulation Changes One Year After Deadly Gas Explosions

    October 21, 2019 —
    A natural gas leak in explosive range forced Lawrence, Mass. residents to evacuate their homes early on Sept. 27, according to electric utility National Grid, which cut power to more than 1,300 customers to avoid another disaster like last year's natural gas explosions and fires in Lawrence and two other towns north of Boston. The leak came just days after federal officials called for changes to national pipeline regulations as they released a final report on the causes of the Sept. 13, 2018, disaster. Read the court decision
    Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Johanna Knapschaefer, ENR
    ENR may be contacted at ENR.com@bnpmedia.com

    Construction Cybercrime Is On the Rise

    May 26, 2019 —
    At the end of April, just as St. Ambrose Roman Catholic Church in Brunswick, Ohio, neared the close of a five-month-long, $5.5-million renovation, Father Bob Stec, the parish pastor, was surprised to hear that the contractor, Marous Brothers Construction, Willoughby, Ohio, had not received a $1.7- million payment. Reprinted courtesy of Tom Sawyer, Engineering News-Record and Jeff Rubenstone, Engineering News-Record Mr. Sawyer may be contacted at sawyert@enr.com Mr. Rubenstone may be contacted at rubenstonej@enr.com Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of

    California Subcontractor Gets a Kick in the Rear (or Perhaps the Front) for Prematurely Recorded Mechanics Lien

    October 21, 2019 —
    California provides three statutorily recognized construction payment remedies: (1) mechanics liens; (2) stop payment notices; and (3) payment bond claims. Each is intended to provide payment protections for those who furnish labor, materials and services on a construction project. However, each is also different in important ways. One of those differences has to do with timing. Specifically, when the statutory payment remedy may be used by a claimant. Stop payment notices can be served at any time during a project even before a claimant has completed its work. However, mechanics liens may only be recorded and payment bond claims may only be made after a claimant has completed or ceased performing its work. In Precision Framing Systems, Inc. v. Luzuriaga, Case No. E069158 (August 29, 2019), the 4th District Court of Appeal examined whether a subcontractor had prematurely recorded a mechanics lien and, thereby, was prevented from filing a lawsuit to foreclose on its mechanics lien. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Garret Murai, Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP
    Mr. Murai may be contacted at gmurai@wendel.com