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Statute of Repose Dependant on When Subcontractors Finished

July 10, 2012 — CDJ Staff

Scott C. Sandberg of Snell and Wilmer writes a post on the JDSupra site about the Colorado Court of Appeals decision in Shaw Construction v. United Builder Services. Sanberg notes that when the general contractor was sued by an HOA, the contractor turned around and sued its subcontractors. The contractor made three claims. They claimed that “improvement” referred to the whole project, that “substantial completion” was reached when the architect certified completion, and that the statute of repose was tolled by the HOA’s service of a Construction Defect Action Reform Act notice.

The subcontractors claimed that “improvement” only referred to their specific work, which reached “substantial completion” when they finished, despite work to be done by other later, and the HOA’s notice to the contractor did not affect the subcontractors. The Colorado court agreed with the subcontractors.

Sandberg notes that some of the contractor’s were not addressed by the court, noting that “the court did not decide whether an improvement triggering the statute of repose can be determined on a trade-by-trade basis,” and that “the court did not decide whether substantial completion occurs when a certificate of occupancy is issued or when the architect certifies completion.”

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Statute of Repose Dependant on When Subcontractors Finished