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    California Builders Right To Repair Current Law Summary:

    Current Law Summary: SB800 (codified as Civil Code §§895, et seq) is the most far-reaching, complex law regulating construction defect litigation, right to repair, warranty obligations and maintenance requirements transference in the country. In essence, to afford protection against frivolous lawsuits, builders shall do all the following:A homeowner is obligated to follow all reasonable maintenance obligations and schedules communicated in writing to the homeowner by the builder and product manufacturers, as well as commonly accepted maintenance practices. A failure by a homeowner to follow these obligations, schedules, and practices may subject the homeowner to the affirmative defenses.A builder, under the principles of comparative fault pertaining to affirmative defenses, may be excused, in whole or in part, from any obligation, damage, loss, or liability if the builder can demonstrate any of the following affirmative defenses in response to a claimed violation:

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    Building Industry Association Southern California - Desert Chapter
    Local # 0532
    77570 Springfield Ln Ste E
    Palm Desert, CA 92211

    Building Industry Association Southern California - Riverside County Chapter
    Local # 0532
    3891 11th St Ste 312
    Riverside, CA 92501

    Building Industry Association Southern California
    Local # 0532
    17744 Sky Park Circle Suite 170
    Irvine, CA 92614

    Building Industry Association Southern California - Orange County Chapter
    Local # 0532
    17744 Skypark Cir Ste 170
    Irvine, CA 92614

    Building Industry Association Southern California - Baldy View Chapter
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    8711 Monroe Ct Ste B
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730

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    Building Industry Association Southern California - Building Industry Association of S Ca Antelope Valley
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    Construction Expert Witness News and Information
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    Drawing from more than 4500 construction, architectural, and engineering related expert designations, the Anaheim, California Construction Expert Directory provides a single point of reference for construction defect and claims related support to builders and construction claims professionals concerned with construction defect, scheduling, and delay matters. BHA provides general construction investigation, trial and claims support services to the building industry's most recognizable companies, insurers, risk managers, and a variety of municipalities. Employing in house resources which comprise construction standard of care consultants, registered architects, professional engineers, and credentialed building envelope experts, the firm brings national experience and local capabilities to Anaheim and the surrounding areas.

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    Construction Expert Witness News & Info
    Anaheim, California

    California Case That Reads Like Russian Novel Results in Less Than Satisfying Result for Both Project Owner and Contractors

    May 01, 2019 —
    Sometimes you can see a train wreck coming a mile away. The next case, Design Built Systems v. Sorokine, Court of Appeal for the First District, Case Nos. A151264 and A152059 (February 26, 2019), is one of those cases. It also happens to read like a Tolstoy novel. The Beginning of the Train Wreck Alexei Sorokine and Elena Koudriavtseva, husband and wife, owned a single family home in San Rafael, California. Sorokine had acquired the house prior to his marriage to Koudriavtseva. In 2010, he traveled to Russia and, for reasons unexplained, has not been able to return. Following a landslide on the property in 2006, Sorokine entered into a construction contract with Design Built Systems to design and build a series of retaining walls. DBS was also retained to remedy a stop work notice issued by the City of San Rafael following work performed by others. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Garret Murai, Wendel Rosen
    Mr. Murai may be contacted at

    Rhode Island Examines a Property Owner’s Intended Beneficiary Status and the Economic Loss Doctrine in the Context of a Construction Contract

    March 18, 2019 —
    In Hexagon Holdings Inc. v. Carlisle Syntec, Inc. No. 2017-175-Appeal, 2019 R.I. Lexis 14 (January 17, 2019), the Supreme Court of Rhode Island, discussing claims associated with allegedly defective construction, addressed issues involving intended beneficiaries to contracts and the application of the economic loss doctrine. The court held that, based on the evidence presented, the building owner, Hexagon Holdings, Inc. (Hexagon) was not an intended third-party beneficiary of the subcontract between the general contractor (A/Z Corporation) and the subcontractor, defendant McKenna Roofing and Construction, Inc. (McKenna). In addition, the court held that, in the context of this commercial construction contract, the economic loss doctrine applied and barred Hexagon’s negligence claims against McKenna. Approximately nine years after Hexagon entered into a contract with A/Z Corporation for the construction of a building, Hexagon filed suit against A/Z Corporation’s roofing installation subcontractor, McKenna, and the manufacturer of the roofing system. Hexagon alleged that the roof began to leak shortly after McKenna installed it. Notably, Hexagon did not sue A/Z Corporation. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Shannon M. Warren, White and Williams
    Ms. Warren may be contacted at

    In UK, 16th Century Abbey Modernizes Heating System by Going Back to Roman Times

    March 18, 2019 —
    Ancient Romans in western England bathed in naturally warm spring water of the spa town of Aquae Sulis, now named Bath. Nearly 2,000 years later, the city’s 16th century abbey is now preparing to draw warmth from the still functioning Great Roman Drain to replace the former monastery’s dilapidated Victorian-era heating system. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Peter Reina, ENR
    Mr. Reina may be contacted at

    California Commission Recommends Switching To Fault-Based Wildfire Liability Standard for Public Utilities

    June 25, 2019 —
    A state-appointed panel advised last week that California should change the standard for determining whether utilities are liable for wildfires. Under the current system, California’s Public Utilities Code § 2106 provides a private right of action by any person or entity that has suffered loss, damages, or injury caused by prohibited or unlawful acts of a public utility. Relying on this statute, property owners have asserted wildfire-related claims directly against allegedly culpable electric utility companies. Public utilities in California also face inverse condemnation claims arising out of wildfires. Under inverse condemnation, where private property is taken for public use and later damaged by the state or its agency, the state or agency is strictly liable to the property owner. In an effort to reduce the financial impact on public utilities resulting from wildfires—as exemplified by Pacific Gas and Electric Co.’s recent filing for Chapter 11 protection in January—the California Commission on Catastrophic Wildfire Cost and Recovery recommended changing the current laws to reflect a fault-based standard. According to the panel, this change would reduce the risk of bankruptcy and decrease the cost of capital. The commission also recommended establishing a wildfire victims’ fund and setting up an electric utility wildfire board to handle the prevention and mitigation of utility-related wildfires. Reprinted courtesy of Hunton Andrews Kurth attorneys Lawrence J. Bracken II, Sergio F. Oehninger, Paul T. Moura and Alexander D. Russo Mr. Bracken may be contacted at Mr. Oehninger may be contacted at Mr. Paul may be contacted at Mr. Alexander may be contacted at Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of

    Mountain States Super Lawyers 2019 Recognizes 21 Nevada Snell & Wilmer Attorneys

    June 18, 2019 —
    Snell & Wilmer is pleased to announce that 21 attorneys from the Nevada offices have been selected for inclusion in the 2019 Mountain States Super Lawyers publication. Of those 21, 12 were recognized as Mountain States Rising Stars. Patrick Byrne was also named to the Top 100 list of attorneys for the Mountain States region. Super Lawyers, part of Thomson Reuters, is a listing of lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a patented multiphase process that includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Snell & Wilmer

    Design Professional Asserting Copyright Infringement And Contributory Copyright Infringement

    May 01, 2019 —
    Standard form construction contracts between an owner and design profesional will address copyright protection, as well as other contractual protections, associated with a design professional’s “instruments of service.” An owner negotiating an agreement with a design professional should consider alternative language that broadens the scope of the contractual license given to it with respect to the use of the design. Regardless, a design professional’s copyright infringement claim is still a challenging claim to ultimately prevail on. While a design professional may likely survive the motion to dismiss stage in a copyright infringement claim, whether it survives the summary judgment stage is another, more challenging, story. “To state a claim for copyright infringement a plaintiff [design professional] must assert [and prove the following two prongs]: ‘(1) ownership of a valid copyright, and (2) copying of constituent elements of the work that are original.’” Robert Swedroe Architect Planners, A.I.A., P.A. v. J. Milton & Associates, Inc., 2019 WL 1059836, *3 (S.D.Fla. 2019) quoting Feist Publ’ns, Inc. v. Rural Tel. Serv. Co., Inc., 499 U.S. 340, 361 (1991). In the first prong, the design professional must establish it complied with statutory formalities to own a valid copyright. Id. In the second prong, the design professional must establish that the defendant copied constituent elements that are original. Id. There is also a claim known as contributory copyright infringement. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of David Adelstein, Kirwin Norris
    Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at

    Sixth Circuit Holds that Some Official Actions Taken in the “Flint Water Crisis” Could Be Constitutional Due Process Violations

    March 27, 2019 —
    In what the Court of Appeals describes as “the infamous government-created environmental disaster known at the Flint Water Crisis,” a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has ruled that some of the government personnel responsible for this disaster may be liable, under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, for monetary damages based on the Substantive Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. The case is Guertin, et al., v. State of Michigan, et al., decided on January 4, 2019. On April 25, 2014, the City of Flint, MI, facing a financial crisis, agreed to switch its drinking water supply from the water provided by the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department to untreated water available from the Flint River that would be treated in the waterworks owned and operated by the City. However, the City waterworks could not provide the needed treatment, which resulted in the corrosive Flint River water leaching lead out of the old Flint water pipes. Soon thereafter, a public health and environmental crisis enveloped Flint. Many lawsuits have been filed against many defendants, and many civil and criminal investigations have been opened. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Anthony B. Cavender, Pillsbury
    Mr. Cavender may be contacted at

    Are Contracting Parties Treated the Same When it Comes to Notice Obligations?

    June 25, 2019 —
    Overview Experienced project delivery team members know too well the importance of timely and proper notice during a construction project. Ideally, contractual notice provisions, and any penalties for non-compliance, should apply equally to all of the contracting parties. For example, failure to comply with a notice provision concerning contract changes could bar a party from pursuing claims. And, untimely or improper notice can, likewise, prevent certain defenses to claims. Nowhere is notice more scrutinized than in the federal government contracting arena. Recently, the United States Court of Federal Claims issued two separate decisions involving the same construction project and the same parties and dealing with two specific aspects of notice in the federal government contracting process. The court’s decisions on the notice issues may, at first, appear to contradict each other or to favor one party over the other. A closer look at these two decisions reveals that notice requirements, in the context of federal government construction contracts, can come in multiple forms and notice is not a “one size fits all” proposition. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of G. Scott Walters, Smith Currie
    Mr. Walters may be contacted at