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    Florida Builders Right To Repair Current Law Summary:

    Current Law Summary: In Title XXXIII Chapter 558, the Florida Legislature establishes a requirement that homeowners who allege construction defects must first notify the construction professional responsible for the defect and allow them an opportunity to repair the defect before the homeowner canbring suit against the construction professional. The statute, which allows homeowners and associations to file claims against certain types of contractors and others, defines the type of defects that fall under the authority of the legislation and the types of housing covered in thelegislation. Florida sets strict procedures that homeowners must follow in notifying construction professionals of alleged defects. The law also establishes strict timeframes for builders to respond to homeowner claims. Once a builder has inspected the unit, the law allows the builder to offer to repair or settle by paying the owner a sum to cover the cost of repairing the defect. The homeowner has the option of accepting the offer or rejecting the offer and filing suit. Under the statute the courts must abate any homeowner legal action until the homeowner has undertaken the claims process. The law also requires contractors, subcontractors and other covered under the law to notify homeowners of the right to cure process.

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    Construction Expert Witness Contractors Building Industry
    Association Directory
    Polk County Builders Association
    Local # 1028
    2232 Heritage Dr
    Lakeland, FL 33801

    Home Builders & CA of Brevard
    Local # 1012
    1500 W Eau Gallie Blvd Ste A
    Melbourne, FL 32935

    Tampa Bay Builders Association
    Local # 1036
    11242 Winthrop Main St
    Riverview, FL 33578

    Hernando Bldrs Assoc
    Local # 1010
    7391 Sunshine Grove Rd
    Brooksville, FL 34613

    Highlands County Builders Association
    Local # 1022
    PO Box 7546
    Sebring, FL 33872

    Home Builders Association of Metro Orlando
    Local # 1040
    544 Mayo Ave
    Maitland, FL 32751

    Home Builders Association of Manatee - Sarasota County
    Local # 1041
    8131 Lakewood Main St Ste 207
    Lakewood Ranch, FL 34202

    Construction Expert Witness News and Information
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    Through more than 4500 general contracting and design related expert designations, the Oldsmar, Florida Construction Expert Directory provides a wide spectrum of trial support and consulting services to developers, risk managers, and construction claims professionals concerned with construction defect, scheduling, and delay claims. BHA provides construction claims investigation and expert services to widely recognized construction practice groups, Fortune 500 builders, CGL carriers, owners, as well as a variety of public entities. Employing in house assets which comprise construction cost, scheduling, and delay experts, professional engineers, ASPE certified professional estimators, and construction safety professionals, the firm brings national experience and local capabilities to Oldsmar and the surrounding areas.

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    Oldsmar, Florida

    New Proposed Regulations Expand CFIUS Jurisdiction Regarding Real Estate

    January 20, 2020 —
    On September 17, 2019, the U.S. Department of Treasury issued two new proposed rules for the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) implementing the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA). Of particular interest to readers of this blog was the second of the proposed rules, which addressed FIRRMA’s real estate-related expansion of CFIUS jurisdiction. Pillsbury's Construction & Real Estate Law Team Read the full story... Read the court decision
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    Construction Lien Waiver Provisions Contractors Should Be Using

    January 06, 2020 —
    It is common in construction for a subcontractor or material supplier of any tier to be required to provide a lien waiver when receiving payment. But not all lien waivers are created equal. While at a minimum, a lien waiver, by definition, needs to include a release of liens, it can also include many other terms that can tie up loose ends or resolve potential problems before they begin. Additional Releases A typical lien release is going to release any liens and right to claim liens on the subject property. But a lien waiver can also include releases of any claims against surety bonds, other statutory rights or claims, and at its broadest, claims against the paying party. One example of a provision that could help accomplish this is a release of “any right arising from a payment bond that complies with a state or federal statute, any common law payment bond right, any claim for payment, and any rights under any similar ordinance, rule, or statute related to claim or payment rights.” Broad release language can also be used to effectively preclude any claims arising prior to the date of the release. Payment Representations and Warranties A typical lien release has no representations or warranties about payment to subcontractors or material suppliers of a lower tier. But contractors can include language requiring the company receiving payment to represent and warrant that all subcontractors of a lower tier have been paid or will be paid within a certain timeframe using the funds provided and that these are material representations and inducements into providing payment. On a related note, if the contract requires subcontractors to provide lien releases from lower tier subcontractors in addition to their own release when seeking payment, contractors can require the sub-subcontractor releases to include representations that they have been paid by the subcontractor to try and tie up payment loose ends all around. Reprinted courtesy of Jason Lambert, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved. Read the court decision
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    140 Days Until The California Consumer Privacy Act Becomes Law - Why Aren't More Businesses Complying?

    September 09, 2019 —
    California, for better or for worse, has a reputation as being a trendsetter, and has taken the lead in the United States by passing the "California Consumer Privacy Act," or "CCPA." This massive law has been on the books since 2018, but hasn't taken effect yet. However, the timeframe for businesses to be in compliance is rapidly diminishing. Currently, there are less than five months for businesses to (a) familiarize themselves with what the law requires; (b) determine how and if they are affected by the law; and (c) determine how to be in compliance with the law's demands. Right now, companies aren't making a rush to become CCPA compliant, but this is a mistake. Below are a few of the misconceptions that businesses have, as well as the realities. MISCONCEPTION 1: It doesn't apply to my company. For many businesses, it will apply. The baseline of the CCPA is: (1) does the business do anything with California residents (including employees); (2) is it for-profit; and (3) it either has $25 million annual revenue, "sells" 50,000 pieces of personal information or receives 50% or more of its revenue from personal information. It does not matter if the business is in Nevada, Arizona, Texas or Delaware. So long as there is some connection to Californian residents, exists to make a profit, and otherwise satisfies either the profit, volume, or revenue percentage requirements, it applies. On that note, even if a business does not sell personal information, it does not mean it does not "sell" personal information under the law, as it includes any exchange of personal information for valuable consideration, such as the exchange of consumer data between companies, or the sale of information to a University for study. MISCONCEPTION 2: The Federal Government will stop it. One of the main reasons we have the CCPA is because the Federal Government has not acted on this issue. Furthermore, there is a high likelihood that any Federal law will not be substantially different from the CCPA, keeping the core principles in place. It's also unlikely that such a law will take effect and be passed in the remaining five months before the CCPA begins enforcement. Companies must accept that ideals of transparency, choice, consent and reasonable security as they relate to consumers' personal information are here to stay. MISCONCEPTION 3: California is still changing the law, so I should wait. California is still in the process of fine-tuning the CCPA, but this is no reason to wait. Fixes to questions arising regarding the CCPA have come out piecemeal, and continued changes, including expansions are likely. For example, employees were previously not addressed specifically within the CCPA, but are being addressed in the planned AB 25, excluding employees from some of the CCPA's protections. Conversely, there have also been planned provisions to expand on the protections and enforcement mechanisms of the CCPA, including a broad and expansive private right of action to permit individuals to sue for technical violations of the statute, like having to wait too long for a response to the demand, even if no actual damage is suffered. Again, the foundational requirements of the CCPA will not change via amendment – so companies should act now. MISCONCEPTION 4: It's too expensive. Actually no. Many of the basic actions are not cost-prohibitive, and are actions a business would want to do anyways: (a) Employee training to avoid data breaches and how to respond to user requests; (b) data mapping to quickly find, access, and arrange protections for consumer data; and (c) ensuring you have reasonable cyber security. This can even be turned into a competitive advantage, as consumers increasingly value companies that share their interests, including their privacy. A compliance mistake could be extraordinarily costly. Currently, a violation for statutory violations of the CCPA can carry a penalty between $2,500 to $7,500 per individual violation. Furthermore, there is a private right of action with statutory damages of $100 to $750 per individual violation that could quickly balloon to exceed $5 million at a minimum, and invites class action/lawsuits for a data breach. While this is true of almost every legal risk, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The penalties on the higher end of the spectrum are for willful violations, and attempts to comply with the law can act to curb potential risks. What Should I Do? If you feel CCPA compliance is important to your business, and decide to prepare for the CCPA with us, our firm has created a 90-day CCPA compliance program where our team will collaborate with you to determine a scalable, practical, and reasonable way for you to meet your needs, without breaking the bank. Let us provide you a free initial consultation to see if our CCPA compliance program works for you. Kyle Janecek is an associate in the firm's Privacy & Data Security practice, and supports the team in advising clients on cyber related matters, including policies and procedures that can protect their day-to-day operations. For more information on how Kyle can help, contact him at Jeff Dennis is the head of the firm's Privacy & Data Security practice. Jeff works with the firm's clients on cyber-related issues, including contractual and insurance opportunities to lessen their risk. For more information on how Jeff can help, contact him at About Newmeyer Dillion For 35 years, Newmeyer Dillion has delivered creative and outstanding legal solutions and trial results that align with the business objectives of clients in diverse industries. With over 70 attorneys working as an integrated team to represent clients in all aspects of business, employment, real estate, privacy & data security and insurance law, Newmeyer Dillion delivers tailored legal services to propel clients' business growth. Headquartered in Newport Beach, California, with offices in Walnut Creek, California and Las Vegas, Nevada, Newmeyer Dillion attorneys are recognized by The Best Lawyers in America©, and Super Lawyers as top tier and some of the best lawyers in California and Nevada, and have been given Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review's AV Preeminent® highest rating. For additional information, call 949.854.7000 or visit Read the court decision
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    The Utility of Arbitration Agreements in the Construction Industry

    December 30, 2019 —
    In today’s ever-evolving world of employment law, it is far from an easy task for construction industry employers to operate their business while successfully navigating all of the potential legal potholes that continue to abound and multiply seemingly with every passing day. This is particularly true in the face of the onslaught of claims lodged by current and former employees in recent years for alleged unpaid wages. While there may not be a “sure bet” way of avoiding such claims, one tool that employers should strongly consider in their arsenal are arbitration and class action waiver agreements. To that end, last year, the United States Supreme Court rendered its ground-breaking decision in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis, 584 U.S. ___ (2018). In Epic Systems, the Supreme Court held that arbitration agreements containing class and collective action waivers of wage and hour disputes are enforceable. At the time of the decision, a split of authority existed among courts across the country as to whether such agreements were viable. On the one hand, several courts contended that class waivers unfairly violated employees’ rights to collectively bargain under the National Labor Relations Act. On the other hand, many other courts were finding that such agreements were fully enforceable and supported by the policies promoted under the Federal Arbitration Act. The Epic Systems Court sided with this latter viewpoint, concluding that the FAA’s clear policy promoting arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism and private parties’ rights to freely negotiate contracts outweighed any potential arguments against such agreements under the NLRA. With wage and hour lawsuits being filed against construction industry employers practically daily, the Epic Systems decision is critically important. Construction employers can now freely enter into arbitration and class waiver agreements with their laborers and thereby potentially limit the cost, expense and exposure of fighting such actions in a public forum on a collective or class-wide basis. To be clear, such agreements will not eliminate employees from bringing such wage and hour claims entirely, nor should the use of those agreements signal to employers that they need not make every good-faith effort to comply with their obligations under the Federal Labor Standards Act and/or any applicable state wage and hour laws. But the reality is that arbitration and class waiver agreements can work to avoid tens or hundreds or even thousands of employees from banding together in some of the massive wage and hour lawsuits being filed across the country. Instead, employers can require that those legal battles be conducted by a single plaintiff in a more controlled environment before an arbitrator (or panel of arbitrators). Reprinted courtesy of Brian L. Gardner & Jason R. Finkelstein, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved. Mr. Gardner may be contacted at Mr. Finkelstein may be contacted at Read the court decision
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    Sweet News for Yum Yum Donuts: Lost Goodwill is Not an All or Nothing Proposition

    October 07, 2019 —
    Last month a California Court of Appeals clarified that a property owner facing eminent domain is only required to prove partial loss of goodwill, not total loss of goodwill, to be entitled to a trial on the amount of goodwill lost. Yum Yum Donuts operated a shop in Los Angeles that was subject to eminent domain by the Los Angeles Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) to make way for light railway track. At trial, Yum Yum sought loss of goodwill as part of its condemnation damages under Code of Civil Procedure section 1263.510. At trial the MTA’s expert testified that Yum Yum could have reduced its goodwill loss if it relocated to one of three alternative locations rather than simply closing the shop. But the expert conceded that even if Yum Yum had relocated, it would have lost some goodwill. Yum Yum refused to relocate, arguing that its relocation costs would render the move unprofitable. The trial court found that Yum Yum’s failure to mitigate its damages barred Yum Yum from having a jury trial to recover any goodwill damages. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Josh Cohen, Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP
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    Techniques for Resolving Construction Disputes

    September 16, 2019 —
    With most construction projects involving dozens, if not hundreds, of companies and individuals, it is no surprise that conflicts arise that are not always able to be resolved on the jobsite. But these conflicts need not always reach the court room or cost thousands (or much more) to resolve. With some planning, contractors can build faster and less expensive dispute resolution options into their project so they can spend more time keeping the project moving and less time arguing over who is right. Even for modest-sized projects, a multi-tiered approached to dispute resolution can be helpful. As a first level of dispute resolution, consider requiring the relevant parties to attend informal or formal mediation. The benefits of even an informal mediation is that it can get stalemated parties to the table to talk again. Formal mediation adds the benefit of a neutral third-party who can help get talks moving or help antagonistic parties communicate. Further, mediation allows each side an opportunity to hear what the other side is looking for to resolve the dispute. Not only is this valuable in reaching a compromise, but it also gives each side an idea of what the other will bring to the table in any subsequent litigation. Finally, there are many ways to implement these procedures. General contractors can require pre-suit mediation with their subcontractors to resolve one-on-one disputes but should also consider requiring subcontractors to use pre-suit mediation to resolve disputes between subcontractors or between subcontractors and sub-subcontractors or material suppliers if the dispute threatens the progress at the project. Reprinted courtesy of Jason Lambert, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved. Read the court decision
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    A Year After Fatal Genoa Viaduct Collapse, Replacement Takes Shape

    November 04, 2019 —
    Nearly 14 months after the Morandi viaduct collapsed in Genoa, Italy, killing 43 people, crews placed the first section of a 1,067-meter-long, 19-span steel and concrete replacement structure. Reprinted courtesy of Peter Reina, Engineering News-Record

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    Don’t Waive Too Much In Your Mechanic’s Lien Waiver

    December 22, 2019 —
    In the past few years, the Virginia General Assembly has, with certain caveats, precluded pre-furnishing waiver of mechanic’s lien rights. While this essentially outlawed the types of mechanic’s lien waiver clauses that pervaded construction contracts in Virginia, the key to the previous sentence is “pre-furnishing.” What the General Assembly left intact were the usual waivers of mechanic’s lien rights typically required to be provided to Owners and others in the payment chain in exchange for payment. These lien waivers come in a few “flavors” from conditional to unconditional, partial to full. Their terms usually include an acknowledgement of receipt of payment (we’ll get to this later), and a statement that the one seeking payment knows of no possible claims by lower tier subcontractors and then waives all mechanic’s lien rights against the property for work performed and included in the request for payment. Often over my years as a Virginia construction attorney, I have noticed that these waivers are often signed without comment or review. They are just part of the process and more often than not are not even an issue for most projects. Of course, if they are an issue they can be a big one, and their terms can come back to bite a claimant that has not properly vetted them. The first potential issue is waiving lien rights while acknowledging receipt prior to actual receipt of the check or wire. Many of the waiver forms that are out there list a payment amount, or possibly simply state that the waiver is in exchange for some small payment, and then state “receipt of which is acknolwedged” or something similar. The issue here is that receipt may not have happened yet because these lien waivers are submitted as part of the payment package in order to get paid in the first place. In short, should you sign the waiver prior to payment, you may have acknowledged a non-event and in the event of non-payment have a written document stating that you waived your claim to a lien for that money. What a court would do with this, I am unsure, but why risk it? My advice, be sure your waiver is contingent on actual clearance of payment as well as receipt. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of The Law Office of Christopher G. Hill
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