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    Florida Builders Right To Repair Current Law Summary:

    Current Law Summary: In Title XXXIII Chapter 558, the Florida Legislature establishes a requirement that homeowners who allege construction defects must first notify the construction professional responsible for the defect and allow them an opportunity to repair the defect before the homeowner canbring suit against the construction professional. The statute, which allows homeowners and associations to file claims against certain types of contractors and others, defines the type of defects that fall under the authority of the legislation and the types of housing covered in thelegislation. Florida sets strict procedures that homeowners must follow in notifying construction professionals of alleged defects. The law also establishes strict timeframes for builders to respond to homeowner claims. Once a builder has inspected the unit, the law allows the builder to offer to repair or settle by paying the owner a sum to cover the cost of repairing the defect. The homeowner has the option of accepting the offer or rejecting the offer and filing suit. Under the statute the courts must abate any homeowner legal action until the homeowner has undertaken the claims process. The law also requires contractors, subcontractors and other covered under the law to notify homeowners of the right to cure process.


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    Tri-County Home Builders
    Local # 1073
    PO Box 420
    Marianna, FL 32447

    Ada compliance expert witness Bradenton Florida Florida Construction Expert Witness 10/ 10

    Tallahassee Builders Association Inc
    Local # 1064
    1835 Fiddler Court
    Tallahassee, FL 32308

    Ada compliance expert witness Bradenton Florida Florida Construction Expert Witness 10/ 10

    Building Industry Association of Okaloosa-Walton Cos
    Local # 1056
    1980 Lewis Turner Blvd
    Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547

    Ada compliance expert witness Bradenton Florida Florida Construction Expert Witness 10/ 10

    Home Builders Association of West Florida
    Local # 1048
    4400 Bayou Blvd Suite 45
    Pensacola, FL 32503

    Ada compliance expert witness Bradenton Florida Florida Construction Expert Witness 10/ 10

    Florida Home Builders Association (State)
    Local # 1000
    PO Box 1259
    Tallahassee, FL 32302

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    Columbia County Builders Association
    Local # 1007
    PO Box 7353
    Lake City, FL 32055

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    Northeast Florida Builders Association
    Local # 1024
    103 Century 21 Dr Ste 100
    Jacksonville, FL 32216

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    ADA COMPLIANCE EXPERT WITNESS BRADENTON FLORIDA FLORIDA CONSTRUCTION EXPERT WITNESS
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    The Ada compliance expert witness Bradenton Florida, Florida Construction Expert Witness Group at BHA, leverages from the experience gained through more than 7,000 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 Ada compliance expert witness Bradenton Florida'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.

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    Can a Lease Force a Tenant's Insurer to Defend the Landlord?

    October 10, 2022 —
    Can an indemnification clause in a commercial lease obligate a tenant’s insurer to defend a landlord? Recently, the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York said, “Yes!” On August 9, 2022, the district court issued a decision in ConMed Corp. vs. Federal Insurance Company, holding that the indemnification clause in a policyholder’s lease triggered the insurer’s duty to defend the landlord in an action arising out of the tenant’s negligence. Facts of the Case ConMed is a medical technology company that leases warehouse space in Georgia from Breit Industrial Canyon (“the Landlord”) to sterilize its medical equipment. ConMed’s employees filed suit against ConMed and a contractor that performed the sterilization, alleging injuries caused by exposure to excessive amounts of chemicals used in the sterilization process (the “ConMed Action”). Thereafter, ConMed’s employees filed a separate lawsuit against the Landlord, alleging that the Landlord permitted storage of unsafe levels of the chemicals at the warehouse without adequate ventilation (the “Landlord Action”). The lease agreement required ConMed to indemnify the Landlord “except in the event of, and to the extent of, Landlord’s negligence or willful misconduct.” Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Kerianne Kane Luckett, Saxe Doernberger & Vita, P.C.
    Ms. Luckett may be contacted at KKane@sdvlaw.com

    Sanibel Causeway Repair: Contractors Flooded Site With Crews, Resources

    November 15, 2022 —
    After Hurricane Ian slammed into southwest Florida, washing out the Sanibel Causeway and cutting off thousands of Sanibel Island residents, another flood hit the area: construction crews and resources that swarmed the area to rebuild two roadway sections and five washed-out approaches to restore access. Reprinted courtesy of Derek Lacey, Engineering News-Record Mr. Lacey may be contacted at laceyd@enr.com Read the full story...

    Global Emissions From Buildings, Construction Climb to Record Levels

    November 28, 2022 —
    Carbon-dioxide emissions from building construction and operations hit an all-time high in 2021, according to the most recent data, a sign that the push to decarbonize the industry by 2050 may be slipping out of reach. Energy-related emissions from the operation of buildings reached 10 gigatonnes of CO2 equivalent, 5% higher than 2020 levels and 2% more than the pre-pandemic peak in 2019, according to data compiled by the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction. Operational energy demand in buildings for heating, cooling, lighting and equipment rose about 4% from 2020 levels, the group said. While investments in building energy efficiency increased 16% last year to $237 billion, the growth in floor space outpaced efficiency efforts. As a result, “the gap between the climate performance of the sector and the 2050 decarbonization pathway is widening,” the report concluded. Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Gautam Naik, Bloomberg

    North Carolina Supreme Court Addresses “Trigger of Coverage,” Allocation and Exhaustion-Related Issues Arising Out of Benzene-Related Claims

    January 04, 2023 —
    On December 16, 2022, the North Carolina Supreme Court decided Radiator Specialty Co. v. Arrowood Indem. Co., 2022 N.C. LEXIS 1122 (Dec. 16, 2022), in which it addressed coverage issues arising out of claims by individuals alleging injury from exposure to benzene contained in the insured’s products. Affirming in part and reversing in part the intermediate appellate court’s decision, the court held: (1) an “exposure trigger” applied; (2) defense and indemnity costs were subject to pro-rata allocation; and (3) vertical exhaustion applied to the duty to defend under certain umbrella policies. Two justices concurred in part and dissented in part. I. Background In Radiator Specialty, the insured (RSC) was named in hundreds of underlying suits arising from individual plaintiffs’ alleged exposure to benzene contained in its products. Between 1971 and 2012, RSC was insured under primary, umbrella and excess liability policies issued by various insurers. In 2013, RSC sued the insurers in North Carolina state court, seeking coverage for approximately $45 million in defense and indemnity costs incurred for the underlying claims. In 2016, the trial court decided motions for summary judgment on a number of coverage issues. Following a bench trial in 2018, the trial court entered final judgment, which required the insurers to reimburse $1.8 million of RSC’s past costs. The rulings were appealed to the North Carolina Court of Appeals, which issued a decision in 2020. In 2021, the North Carolina Supreme Court granted RSC’s and certain insurers’ petitions for discretionary review of the Court of Appeals’ decision. Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of White and Williams LLP

    Court Finds That $400 Million Paid Into Abatement Fund Qualifies as “Damages” Under the Insured’s Policies

    November 21, 2022 —
    In Sherwin-Williams Co. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London, et al., the Court of Appeals for Ohio’s Eighth District reversed the lower court, finding that money paid by the insured into an abatement fund was “damages” as that undefined term was used in the policyholder’s insurance policies. 2022-Ohio-3031, ¶ 1. Sherwin-Williams is a cautionary tale about how insurers may try to narrow the meaning of undefined terms in their insurance policies. The dispute in Sherwin-Williams focused on coverage for $400 million that the policyholder and other defendants were ordered to pay into an abatement fund to be used by California cities and counties to mitigate the hazards caused by lead paint in homes. Id. ¶ 1. Although the underlying litigation proceeded in California, Ohio law governed coverage, which raised issues of first impression in Ohio. Id. Among other things, the insurers argued that the money paid into the abatement fund did not qualify as “damages” under the policies. Id. ¶ 57. The insured argued that, because the insurers did not define “damages” in the policies, the term had to be given its ordinary meaning. Id. ¶ 56. Reprinted courtesy of Lorelie S. Masters, Hunton Andrews Kurth and Yaniel Abreu, Hunton Andrews Kurth Ms. Masters may be contacted at lmasters@HuntonAK.com Mr. Abreu may be contacted at yabreu@HuntonAK.com Read the full story...

    Narrow Promissory Estoppel Exception to Create Insurance Coverage

    August 07, 2022 —
    There is an affirmative claim known as promissory estoppel. (Whereas equitable estoppel is used an affirmative defense, promissory estoppel is used as an affirmative claim.) To prove promissory estoppel, a plaintiff must plead and prove the following three elements: “(1) a representation as to a material fact that is contrary to a later-asserted position; (2) a reasonable reliance on that representation; and (3) a change in position detrimental to the party claiming estoppel caused by the representation and reliance thereon.” Romo v. Amedex Ins. Co., 930 So.2d 643, 650 (Fla. 3d DCA 2006) (citation and quotation omitted). Stated differently: “A party will be estopped from denying liability under the principle of promissory estoppel when the party makes ‘[a] promise which the promisor should reasonably expect to induce action or forbearance of a definite and substantial character on the part of the promisee and which does induce such action or forbearance…[and] injustice can be avoided only by enforcement of the promise.’” Criterion Leasing Group v. Gulf Coast Plastering & Drywall, 582 So.2d 799, 800 (Fla. 1st DCA 1991). Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of David Adelstein, Kirwin Norris, P.A.
    Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at dma@kirwinnorris.com

    Risky Business: Contractual Protections in the 'New Normal'

    January 04, 2023 —
    The point of contracts is to create certainty to avoid litigated or arbitrated disputes. Still, the various parties in the construction process may have different risk tolerances. For example, general contractors are often characterized as “risk-tolerant.” That risk, though, is usually calculated by the contractor internally, outside the terms of the written contract, based on an assumption that the contractor can get the work done more cheaply and more quickly than the owner anticipated. Project owners typically want and expect close-to-absolute certitude—absolutely as to cost—in their construction contracts. The standard fixed-price or lump-sum construction contract is geared toward protecting that interest. Post-COVID-19, however, the discussion in the industry suggests that all bets are off when pricing and agreeing to construction work. Labor and materials shortages have sent owners and their design consultants backpedaling when general contractors pursuing a fixed-price contract seek contractual concessions that “un-fix” the price. Reprinted courtesy of Daniel Lund III , Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved. Read the full story...

    Fifth Circuit Requires Causal Distinction for Ensuing Loss Exception to Faulty Work Exclusion

    August 29, 2022 —
    In Balfour Beatty v. Liberty Mutual Ins. Co., the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals provided valuable insight on coverage available through ensuing loss exceptions to faulty work and design exclusions in builder’s risk insurance policies. In Balfour Beatty, the Court held that, in order to establish coverage through an ensuing loss exception, the ensuing loss must be causally distinct from the original excluded loss.1 Balfour Beatty, serving as general contractor for construction of a commercial office building in Houston, Texas, subcontracted with Milestone for steelwork on the project. As part of this work, Milestone welded a 2-inch metal plate to external tubing on the eighteenth floor of the building. While welding the plate in place, welding slag fell down the side of the building, damaging exterior glass windows on the floors below. Balfour Beatty and Milestone, along with the developer, sought coverage for the damage to the windows under their builder’s risk policy, issued by Liberty Mutual. Liberty Mutual denied coverage, claiming that the damage was excluded by the policy’s “Defects, Errors, and Omissions” exclusion. The insureds sued, arguing that the ensuing loss exception to this exclusion would carve back coverage because the damage to the windows constituted an “ensuing loss.” Reprinted courtesy of Avery J. Cantor, Saxe Doernberger & Vita and William S. Bennett, Saxe Doernberger & Vita Mr. Cantor may be contacted at ACantor@sdvlaw.com Mr. Bennett may be contacted at WBennett@sdvlaw.com Read the full story...