Mealey's Construction Defects

  • January 27, 2020

    Judge Stays Defects Case Pending Completion Of Presuit Notice Requirements

    ATLANTA — A trial court judge in Georgia on Jan. 22 stayed a construction defects case pending the parties’ completion of notice requirements that say a couple must provide 90 days’ notice to a contractor before filing suit to allow the contractor to attempt to remedy the alleged defects (Christopher Melton, et al. v. Remediation Group Inc., No. 19-EV-006496, Ga. Super., Fulton Co.).

  • January 27, 2020

    Appeals Panel:  Parties’ Date Of Completion Did Not Start Statute Of Repose

    SAN DIEGO — A California appeals panel on Jan. 22 denied a general contractor’s request for a writ of mandate seeking to overturn a ruling denying its motion for summary judgment in a construction defects action, holding that a contractually agreed-upon date of substantial completion between it and the developer cannot start the running of the 10-year statute of repose (Hensel Phelps Construction Co. v. Superior Court of San Diego County, No. D076264, Calif. App., 4th Dist., 1st Div., 2020 Cal. App. LEXIS 52).

  • January 22, 2020

    Couple Tells 5th Circuit Their Redhibitory Defect Claim Over Windows Was Timely

    NEW ORLEANS — A couple tells the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a Jan. 17 brief that they presented sufficient evidence to demonstrate that they did not discover a redhibitory defect in windows they purchased from Jeld-Wen Inc. that allowed for water intrusion until less than one year before filing suit and that they are entitled to a return of the purchase price of the windows and attorney fees (Ronald Leo, et al. v. Jeld-Wen Inc., No. 19-30761, 5th Cir.).

  • January 21, 2020

    Couple Says Defects Claims Are Not Untimely, Subject To Arbitration

    NEW CASTLE, Del. — A Delaware couple says in an opposition brief filed in state court on Jan. 9 that their lawsuit against their home builder over water intrusion is not subject to dismissal, arguing that their claims are not barred by the statute of limitations or subject to an arbitration clause in the home warranty (Ryan Altenbaugh, et al. v. Benchmark Builders Inc., et al., No. N19C-11-046, Del. Super., New Castle Co.).

  • January 17, 2020

    Minnesota High Court: Buildings In Complex Have Different Limitations Periods

    ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Minnesota Supreme Court on Jan. 15 vacated in part and affirmed in part a ruling finding that an association of condominium unit owners’ construction defects claims were barred by the 10-year statute of repose, holding that the limitations period for each building begins upon substantial completion and that the limitations period for each unit does not begin when it is purchased (Village Lofts at St. Anthony Falls Association v. Housing Partners III-Lofts LLC, et al., No. A18-0256, Minn. Sup., 2020 Minn. LEXIS 6).

  • January 09, 2020

    Cleveland Diocese Sues Roofer Over Damages Caused By Incomplete Project

    AKRON, Ohio — The Catholic Diocese of Cleveland on Jan. 2 sued a roofing contractor in Ohio state court, complaining that it paid more than $48,000 for gym roof repairs that were never completed (Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland v. Bella Roofing, et al., No. 2020-01-0014, Ohio Comm. Pls., Summit Co.).

  • January 06, 2020

    Panel Finds Woman Did Not Waive Remedy When Filing Initial Warranty Claim

    TRENTON, N.J. — A New Jersey appeals panel on Dec. 31 affirmed the dismissal of a modular home builder’s lawsuit that sought to bar a woman from arbitrating a warranty claim over construction defects, finding that she did not waive her right to a remedy when filing a pro se warranty claim in 2017 because she did not know the extent of the defects at issue (Sica Industries Inc., et al. v. Grace Macedo, No. A-3802-18T3, N.J. Super., App. Div., 2019 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2667).

  • January 02, 2020

    Continuance Of Defects Suit Did Not Toll Limitations Period, Nevada Court Says

    CARSON CITY, Nev. — A panel of the Nevada Supreme Court on Dec. 19 affirmed the dismissal of a couple’s construction defects lawsuit against their home builder, finding that an August 2015 agreement to continue the trial date did not toll the five-year limitations period for the case to go to trial (Paul D. Rotes v. Suncrest Builders Inc., No. 76180, Nev. Sup., 2019 Nev. LEXIS 1369).

  • January 02, 2020

    S.C. Panel Finds Couple Did Not Waive Right To Arbitrate Defect Claims

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — A trial court judge in South Carolina erred when dismissing a couple’s construction defects lawsuit because the amount of time between the filing of their complaint and the motion to compel arbitration did not result in a waiver, a state appeals panel ruled Dec. 31 in vacating the ruling (Andrew McIntire, et al. v. Seaquest Development Co. Inc., et al., No. 2019-UP-413, S.C. App., 2019 S.C. App. Unpub. LEXIS 429).

  • December 20, 2019

    Window Maker Tells 5th Circuit Judge Erred When Converting Warranty Claim

    NEW ORLEANS — Jeld-Wen Inc. tells the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in a brief filed Dec. 18 that a judgment ordering the company to pay a couple $335,000 should be overturned because a federal judge in Louisiana erred when converting the plaintiffs’ breach of express warranty claim over a redhibitory defect to a cause of action stemming from a breach of contract (Ronald Leo, et al. v. Jeld-Wen Inc., No. 19-30761, 5th Cir.).

  • December 20, 2019

    Home Builder Moves To Dismiss Defects Class Action, Cites Arbitration Clause

    CHARLESTON, S.C. — Lennar Carolinas LLC moved in South Carolina state court on Dec. 18 for dismissal of a class action for homeowners in a development who claim that the builder’s negligence allowed their homes to suffer from water intrusion, arguing that the court lacks jurisdiction because the claims are subject to arbitration pursuant to a clause in the purchase and sales agreement (Susan Rhoden, et al. v. Lennar Carolinas LLC, et al., No. 2019-CP-10-4807, S.C. Comm. Pls., Charleston Co.).

  • December 19, 2019

    Judge Denies Certification Of Consumer Fraud Class Against Home Builder

    CHICAGO — A proposed class for buyers of homes made by NVR Inc. that did not have solid wood cabinets as a standard feature and did not have 30-year roof shingles cannot be certified under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(b)(3), a federal judge in Illinois ruled Dec. 13, finding that individual issues predominate over common classwide issues (Paul Smith, et al. v. NVR Inc., No. 17 C 8328, N.D. Ill., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 216560).

  • December 13, 2019

    Panel Says Plaintiffs Waived Right To Appeal Denial Of Chinese Drywall Claim

    NEW ORLEANS — A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Dec. 12 dismissed an appeal brought by a number of plaintiffs seeking review of the denial of their claim for remediation of Chinese-manufactured drywall from their homes, holding that they waived their right to appeal by entering into a settlement agreement (In re:  Chinese-Manufactured Drywall Products Liability Litigation, No. 18-31223, 5th Cir.).

  • December 13, 2019

    Arkansas Panel Says It Lacks Jurisdiction Over Couple’s Suit Against Builder

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — An Arkansas appeals court panel on Dec. 11 dismissed a couple’s appeal of a ruling dismissing their lawsuit accusing the builder of their home of breach of contract over alleged construction defects, holding that the trial court’s ruling did not address all of the plaintiffs’ claims (Ken Lancaster, et al. v. Rogers Construction Inc., et al., No. CV-19-139, Ark. App., 2nd Div., 2019 Ark. App. LEXIS 626).

  • December 13, 2019

    Georgia Couple, Florida Company Sue Hurricane Strap Maker Over Premature Corrosion

    SAN FRANCISCO — A Georgia couple and a company that own homes in Florida filed a class action in federal court in California on Dec. 2 against the maker of hurricane straps that were attached to their homes, alleging that the straps are defective because they prematurely corrode and do not protect homes against damages caused by hurricane-force winds (Cary W. Cooper, et al. v. Simpson Strong-Tie Co. Inc., et al., No. 19-cv-7901, N.D. Calif.).

  • December 11, 2019

    Drywall Maker Says Class Allegations Lack Commonality, Timeliness

    NEW ORLEANS — A manufacturer of allegedly defective drywall made in China filed a motion in Louisiana federal court Dec. 9 to deny class certification for a proposed nationwide class of individuals claiming they suffered physical and economic injuries as a result of having the product being in their homes, arguing that the allegations are untimely and lack commonality (In re:  Chinese-Manufactured Drywall Products Liability Litigation, MDL 2047, Elizabeth Bennett, et al. v. Gebr. Knauf Verwaltungsgesellschaft KG, et al., No. 14-2722, E.D. La.).

  • December 03, 2019

    Judge Overrules Couple’s Objections To Arbitrator’s Award Over Home Defects

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A federal judge in Delaware on Dec. 2 overruled a couple’s objections to a magistrate judge’s recommendation to affirm an arbitrator’s award in a construction defects case, holding that the magistrate judge did not err in finding that the arbitration provision of a home warranty was valid and enforceable (Jason Jones, et al. v. Home Buyers Warranty, et al., No. 17-773-JFB,SRF, D. Del., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 206878).

  • December 03, 2019

    MacDill Air Force Base Residents Sue Owners, Developers Over Mold

    TAMPA, Fla. — A number of active military personnel and their spouses on Dec. 2 filed a class action in Florida federal court accusing the owners and developers of the MacDill Air Force Base of failing to provide them with sufficient housing due to mold infestations that they claim have caused economic losses and physical injuries (Joshua Lenz, et al. v. Michaels Organization LLC, et al., No. 19-cv-2970-T-30, M.D. Fla.).

  • November 26, 2019

    Texas High Court Says Judge Should Decide Arbitrability Of Class Claims

    AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Supreme Court on Nov. 22 upheld a ruling finding that a home warranty company is not required to arbitrate a couple’s class claims accusing it of requiring homeowners to provide overbroad releases as a precondition to fulfilling its warranty obligations to remedy construction defects, holding that judges, not arbitrators, determine issues of arbitrability (Nathan Robinson, et al. v. Home Owners Management Enterprises Inc., No. 18-0504, Texas Sup., 2019 Tex. LEXIS 1170).

  • November 22, 2019

    Woman Sues Builder Over Burst Pipe, Ineffective Mold Remediation, Fire

    RICHMOND, Texas — A woman says in a lawsuit filed in state court on Oct. 21 that the builder of her home was negligent for failing to inform her about a burst polyethylene pipe (PEX) that caused a flood in the master bedroom, improperly remediating mold that later grew in the house and starting a fire during the remediation of the mold (Carmen Melillo v. Perry Homes LLC, NO. 19-DCV-267788, Texas Dist., 434th Jud. Dist., Fort Bend Co., 2019 TX. Dist. Ct. Pleadings LEXIS 313745).