Mealey's Construction Defects

  • September 14, 2020

    Magistrate: Arizona Plaintiffs Can Seek Relief Under UCL In Defective Product Suit

    SAN FRANCISCO — A federal magistrate judge in California on Sept. 8 granted in part and denied in part a manufacturer's motion to dismiss class action claims alleging that structural support products suffer from an inherent defect that was fraudulently concealed from California and Arizona homeowners, rejecting the manufacturer's contention that the complaint improperly alleged California Consumers Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) and unfair competition law (UCL) claims by out-of-state plaintiffs (Simon Nguyen, et al. v. Simpson Strong-Tie Company, Inc., et al., No. 19-07901, N.D. Calif., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 164718).

  • September 03, 2020

    New Suits In Florida, Texas, Complain Of Defects, Improperly Installed Stucco

    Six new lawsuits filed in Florida state court between Aug. 7 and Aug. 21 as well as a suit filed in Texas state court on July 15 allege that construction defects, such as the improper installation of stucco and building code violations, caused damages to plaintiffs' homes (Isaie Marc et al. v. Lennar Homes LLC, No. 2020-CA-8426, Fla. Cir., 9th Jud. Cir., Orange Co., Don Lefever, et al. v. Lennar Homes LLC, No. 2020-CA-1874, Fla. Cir., 6th Jud. Cir., Pasco Co., Lakeview Pointe at Horizon West Homeowners Association Inc. v. Pulte Home Corp., No. 2020-CA-008018, Fla. Cir., 9th Jud. Cir., Orange Co., Richard Henderson, et al. v. KB Home, et al., No. 2020-31064, Fla Cir., 7th Jud. Cir., Volusia Co., Eliezer Chanlatte, et al. v. Beazer Homes Corp., No. 20-6417, Fla. Cir., 13th Jud. Cir., Hillsborough Co., Aria on the Bay Condominium Association Inc. v. Bayshore Plaza LLC, et al., No. 2020-16998, Fla. Cir., 11th Jud. Cir., Miami-Dade Co., Anchuan Zheng v. Taylor Morrison of Texas Inc., No. 20-DC-274886, Texas Dist., 268th Jud. Dist., Fort Bend Co.).

  • September 02, 2020

    Home Building Company Owner Says Court Properly Affirmed Arbitration Award

    ATLANTA — The owner of a home building company told a Georgia appeals court panel in an Aug. 4 brief that a trial court's refusal to vacate an arbitration award against the company, but not against the owner, should be affirmed because the homeowner fails to show that the arbitrator's decision was prejudicial and because the transcripts of the proceedings were not presented to the lower court (Mahktar Kamara v. Mark Anthony Homes LLC, et al., No. A20A2019, Ga. App., 2020 Ga. APP. CT. BRIEFS LEXIS 1242).

  • September 02, 2020

    Woman's Suit Over Foundation Crack Untimely, Not Subject To Tolling, Judge Finds

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Florida judge on Aug. 24 awarded summary judgment to Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville Inc. (Habijax), after finding that a woman's 2017 lawsuit over a crack she discovered in the foundation of her home in 2005 was barred by the state's four-year statute of limitations and not subject to a 2010 tolling agreement involving the city of Jacksonville, the builder and residents of the development (Fairway Oaks Community v. Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville Inc., et al., No. 16-2017-CA-02706, Fla. 4th Jud. Cir., Duval Co.).

  • September 02, 2020

    Class Action Suit:  DAP's Crystal Clear Sealant Yellows Shortly After Application

    MINNEAPOLIS — A man filed a nationwide class action lawsuit on Aug. 31 in federal court in Minnesota, complaining that DAP Products Inc.'s "crystal clear" bathroom, kitchen and plumbing sealant turns yellow within weeks of application and that the company misrepresented the quality of the product despite knowing about the problem (Brandon Ehlis v. DAP Products Inc., No. 20-1872, D. Minn.).

  • September 01, 2020

    Contractor's Indemnification Cross-Claims Against Suppliers Dismissed By Judge

    SALT LAKE CITY — A federal judge in Utah on Aug. 26 dismissed with prejudice a contractor's cross-claims for indemnification against the suppliers of a liner and joints that were used to repair a portion of a city's sewer line and that were allegedly defective, after finding that the contractor was unable to satisfy all of the elements of the claim (Salt Lake City Corp. v. Sekisui SPR Americas LLC, et al., No. 17-1095, D. Utah, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 155403).

  • September 01, 2020

    Builder's Suit Over Defective PEX Piping Survives Dismissal

    SAN ANTONIO — A homebuilder's lawsuit against the maker of PEX piping that allegedly bursts prematurely because it cannot withstand exposure to chlorine in potable water survived a motion to dismiss when a federal judge in Texas ruled Aug. 31 that allegations in an amended complaint sufficiently state claims for relief (Gehan Homes Ltd. v. NIBCO Inc., No. 19-1478, W.D. Texas, 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 157681).

  • September 01, 2020

    Distributor, Amici Tell U.S. High Court Arbitrators Must Decide Arbitrability

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Three amicus curiae briefs filed Aug. 28 in the U.S. Supreme Court support a dental equipment distributor's arguments in its Aug. 21 petitioner brief that certain carveouts in arbitration agreements don't negate delegation agreements (Henry Schein Inc. v. Archer and White Sales Inc., No. 19-963, U.S. Sup.).

  • August 31, 2020

    California Panel Reinstates Class Allegations Over Leaky Copper Pipes

    SANTA ANA, Calif.  — A California appeals panel on Aug. 27 overturned a ruling striking class allegations brought by homeowners who contend that their builder violated the Right to Repair Act when installing defective copper piping in their home, finding that the proposed class's claims are an exception to the act's exclusion on class actions involving parts that are manufactured offsite (Kendall Brasch, et al. v. K. Hovnanian Enterprises Inc., et al., No. G057436, Calif. App., 4th Dist., 3rd Div., 2020 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5541).

  • August 31, 2020

    Class Allegations Over Leaky Copper Pipes Revived By California Panel

    SANTA ANA, Calif.  — A California appeals panel on Aug. 27 reversed a ruling granting Pulte Home Corp.'s motion to strike class allegations from a lawsuit complaining about leaky copper pipes installed in homes in a development, finding that it was not persuaded by the interpretation of the Right to Repair Act in Kohler v. Superior Court, 29 Cal.App.5th 55 (Calif. App., 2nd Dist., 4th Div. 2018) (Jeff Smith, et al. v. Pulte Home Corp., No. G057435, Calif. App., 4th Dist., 3rd Div., 2020 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5616).

  • August 31, 2020

    Class Allegations Over Leaky Copper Pipes Revived By California Panel

    SANTA ANA, Calif.  — A California appeals panel on Aug. 27 reversed a ruling granting Pulte Home Corp.'s motion to strike class allegations from a lawsuit complaining about leaky copper pipes installed in homes in a development, finding that it was not persuaded by the interpretation of the Right to Repair Act in Kohler v. Superior Court, 29 Cal.App.5th 55 (Calif. App., 2nd Dist., 4th Div. 2018) (Jeff Smith, et al. v. Pulte Home Corp., No. G057435, Calif. App., 4th Dist., 3rd Div., 2020 Cal. App. Unpub. LEXIS 5616).

  • August 28, 2020

    Judge Trims Claims From Suit Over Mold, Defects At Fort Meade Military Base

    BALTIMORE — A federal judge in Maryland on Aug. 27 dismissed claims for negligent breach of warranty to repair, violation of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) and civil conspiracy from a lawsuit brought by 22 adults and 21 children who reside at the Fort George G. Meade military base who complain that defects in the homes and in the heating, air conditioning and ventilation systems have caused mold growth, finding that the allegations were insufficient to support the causes of action (Joseph Addi, et al. v. Corvias Management Army LLC, et al., No. 19-3253, D. Md., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 155908).

  • August 26, 2020

    Construction Company Owner Indicted For Fraudulently Obtaining COVID-19 Benefits

    MINNEAPOLIS — A construction company owner was indicted Aug. 19 in Minnesota federal court for fraudulently obtaining $841,000 from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which was implemented as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to provide forgivable loans to small businesses for job retention and other expenses (United States v. Kyle W. Brenizer, No. 20-cr-177, D. Minn.).

  • August 24, 2020

    Subsequent Purchaser Doctrine Bars 19 Plaintiffs' Claims In Chinese Drywall MDL

    NEW ORLEANS — The federal judge in Louisiana overseeing litigation stemming from defective drywall made in China awarded summary judgment to the defendants on Aug. 21 after finding that the subsequent purchaser doctrine barred claims brought by 19 Louisiana residents because they purchased homes after the drywall was installed and did not receive an assignment of rights from the sellers to pursue claims over the product (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., 2020 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 151729).

  • August 21, 2020

    Builder: Homeowners Knew In 2011 That Water Leaks Stemmed From Defect

    NEW CASTLE, Del. — A homebuilder argues in a brief filed July 27 in Delaware state court that a couple's construction defects lawsuit is barred by the three-year statute of limitations because they knew that water intrusion in their home was caused by a construction defect no later than 2011 (Ryan Altenbaugh, et al. v. Benchmark Builders Inc., et al., No. N19C-11-046, Del. Super., New Castle Co.).

  • August 06, 2020

    2 Florida Lawsuits Say Lennar Improperly Installed Stucco During Construction

    Two lawsuits filed in Florida state court in July say that Lennar Homes LLC violated the Florida Building Code and American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) standards when applying stucco onto a residential home and a condominium complex that resulted in moisture intrusion and damage (Kevin Rafiq, et al. v. Lennar Homes LLC, No. 2020-CA-7189-A-01, Fla. Cir., 9th Jud. Cir., Orange Co., Martinique at the Oasis Neighborhood Association Inc. v. Lennar Homes LLC, NO. 2020-CA-14970-CA-01, Fla. Cir., 11th Jud. Cir., Miami-Dade Co.).

  • August 06, 2020

    Parties Agree To Abate Construction Defects Suit Pending Arbitration

    FORT BEND, Texas — A Texas judge on June 21 granted a joint motion filed by a homebuilder and plaintiffs who claim that defects in the construction of their home have resulted in mold growth and high humidity to stay proceedings pending arbitration (Anil Mittal, et al. v. Calatlantic Homes of Texas Inc., doing business as Lennar, et al., No. 19-DCV-265738, Texas Dist., 400th Jud. Dist., Fort Bend Co.).

  • August 05, 2020

    Home Builder Moves To Abate Defects Suit, Compel Arbitration

    FORT BEND, Texas — A home builder accused of improperly applying stucco to a home and failing to comply with the Texas Building Code moved in Texas state court on June 22 to abate the proceedings pending a couple's filing of notices required by state law and moved to compel arbitration, arguing that even though the plaintiffs are subsequent purchasers, their causes of action are still subject to an arbitration provision in the original purchase agreement (Willem Coetser, et al. v. Darling Homes of Texas LLC, No. 20-DCV-273700, Texas Dist., 248th Jud. Dist., Fort Bend Co., 2020 TX Dist. Ct. Pleadings LEXIS 5252).

  • August 05, 2020

    Vice Chancellor Defers Ruling On Homeowners' Claims For Stormwater Act Violations

    GEORGETOWN, Del. — A vice chancellor in Delaware on Aug. 4 granted in part a motion to dismiss brought by a developer, its subsidiary and a home builder, finding that owners of homes in a development that suffers from poor drainage could not pursue claims for breach of fiduciary duty and piercing the corporate veil and deferred ruling on their claims for injunctive and declaratory relief under the Delaware Stormwater Management Act (Anthony Nieves, et al. v. Insight Building Co., LLC, et al., No. 2019-0464-SG, Del. Chanc., Sussex Co., 2020 Del. Ch. LEXIS 256).

  • August 05, 2020

    Minnesota Panel Upholds $1M Verdict Against Stucco Subcontractor Over Defects

    ST. PAUL, Minn. — A Minnesota appeals court panel on Aug. 3 upheld a jury verdict ordering a stucco subcontractor to pay $1 million to a condominium owner's association over improper installation, finding that the trial court judge did not err in finding the lawsuit timely and that challenges to evidentiary rulings and special jury instructions do not warrant reversal  (Village Homes of Grandview Square II Association v. R.E.C. Inc., et al., No. A19-1681, Minn. App., 2020 Minn. App. LEXIS 224).