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You are a subcontractor (or sub-subcontractor) on a public construction project. The general contractor has a public payment bond per Florida Statute s. 255.05. You finished your scope some time ago but you are still owed retainage. When do you sue for retainage? There is a statutory retainage exception that governs the timing of when to sue for retainage.
In prior articles, I reinforced the importance of general contractors including “primary and noncontributory” language in subcontracts and requiring the subcontractor to provide an analogous “primary and noncontributory” endorsement. As a general contractor this is important, particularly since you are going to require the subcontractor to (i) indemnify you for claims relatin ...
The case of Divine Motel Group, LLC v. Rockhill Ins. Co., 2016 WL 3902041 (11th Cir. 2016) illustrates the importance of presenting and supporting your theme for insurance coverage. This theme needs to be well thought out and considered in the context of maximizing insurance coverage. Otherwise, you are navigating in the world of insurance exclusions without a strategic agend ...
A recent case out of New York held that damage to a tower crane from a storm during construction is excluded from a builder’s risk policy because a tower crane is a machine that fits within the contractor’s tools exclusion, a common exclusion in builder’s risk policies. (Check out this article for a discussion on this case.
Strategy is important. This is especially true if you are trying to avoid arbitration. In a recent federal district court case, a subcontractor sued the prime contractor and the Miller Act payment bond surety. The subcontractor, however, had an arbitration provision in its subcontract with the prime contractor.
What is a common law payment bond? A common law payment bond is a bond not required or governed by a statute. For example, if a prime contractor provides the owner a payment bond, that bond will be a statutory payment bond. On the other hand, if a subcontractor provides the general contractor with a payment bond, that bond will be a common law payment bond.
Can a claimant recover attorney’s fees in a Miller Act payment bond dispute even though the Miller Act does not contain a prevailing party attorney’s fee provision? Yes, if the underlying contract that formed the basis of the suit provided for attorney’s fees. What about a prime contractor and surety—can they recover their attorney’s fees if they prevail in a Miller Act pa ...
As you know from prior postings, arbitration is a creature of contract. Hence, if you want your disputes to be resolved through arbitration, as opposed to litigation, make sure to include an arbitration provision in your agreement that covers all disputes arising out of or relating to the agreement.
Since insurance, particularly liability insurance, is such an important component when it comes a construction project, understanding certain nuances such as a Coblentz Agreement (a what kind of agreement agreement?!?—keep reading) becomes helpful. If there is a construction defect claim / lawsuit, the implicated parties (e.g.
Sometimes you come across a head scratcher. This would be a decision that does not seem to make a whole lot of sense. For instance, if you are sued and you maintain liability insurance that would potentially provide you a defense and indemnification, not notifying your insurance carrier is a head scratcher. You pay substantial dollars towards the premium of that policy.
Construction lienors need to appreciate on the frontend that recovering statutory attorney’s fees in a construction lien action is NOT automatic—far from it. This is because the prevailing party for purposes of attorney’s fees in a construction lien action is determined by the “significant issues test,” a subjective test with no bright line standards based on who the trial co ...
“With regard to claims for professional negligence, the Florida Supreme Court has explained that ‘where the negligent party is a professional, the law imposes a duty to perform the requested services in accordance with the standard of care used by similar professionals in the community under similar circumstances.’” Sunset Beach Investments, LLC v. Kimley-Horn and Associates, 42 Fla. L.
Under a federal construction contract, a contractor MUST comply with the Contract Disputes Act and request a final decision from the contracting officer in order for the United States Court of Federal Claims to have jurisdiction over the claim. This means that in most instances a request for an equitable adjustment (REA) will not meet the requirements of the Contract Disputes ...
A performance bond is a valuable tool designed to guarantee the performance of the principal of the contract made part of the bond. But, it is only a valuable tool if the obligee (entity the bond is designed to benefit) understands that it needs to properly trigger the performance bond if it is looking to the bond (surety) to remedy and pay for a contractual default.
The defense of set-off is an important defense in construction disputes, particularly multiparty disputes. For more information on this defense, please check out this article as it explained the application of set-off in civil disputes in detail. The issue of set-off will come up in a multiparty dispute when a plaintiff settles with one or more of the defendants.
In a previous article I discussed bad faith when it comes to an insurance claim. Recently, in Barton v. Capitol Preferred Insurance Co., Inc., 41 Fla. L. Weekly D2736b (Fla. 5th DCA 2016), the court discussed bad faith in the first-party insurance context (i.e., a property / homeowners insurance policy).
The Florida Supreme Court in Sebo v. American Home Assurance Co., Inc., 41 Fla. L. Weekly S582a (Fla. 2016) gave really good news to claimants seeking recovery under a first-party all-risk property insurance policy. The Court held that the concurrent cause doctrine and not the efficient proximate cause doctrine was the proper theory of recovery to apply when multiple perils—a ...
The Spearin doctrine, referred to as the implied warranty of constructability doctrine, is oftentimes utilized as an affirmative defense by a contractor being sued for construction defects. Under the Spearin doctrine (recognized in the government contract setting), a contractor is NOT liable for defects in the plans and specifications furnished by the owner if the contractor ...
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