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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
    Local # 0532
    8711 Monroe Ct Ste B
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730

    Building Industry Association Southern California - LA/Ventura Chapter
    Local # 0532
    28460 Ave Stanford Ste 240
    Santa Clarita, CA 91355

    Building Industry Association Southern California - Building Industry Association of S Ca Antelope Valley
    Local # 0532
    44404 16th St W Suite 107
    Lancaster, CA 93535

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    COVID-19 Information and Resources

    Agreement Authorizing Party’s Own Engineer to Determine Substantial Compliance Found Binding on Adverse Party

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    Through over 4500 construction and design related expert designations, the Anaheim, California Construction Expert Directory delivers a comprehensive construction and design expert support solution to legal professionals and construction practice groups concerned with construction defect and claims matters. BHA provides building related consulting and expert witness support services to the nation's most 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 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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    Anaheim, California

    “Made in America Week” Highlights Requirements, Opportunities for Contractors and Suppliers

    August 14, 2023 —
    On July 21, 2023, President Biden designated July 23-29, 2023, as “Made in America Week.” This proclamation builds on the Biden Administration’s efforts to bolster domestic manufacturing through evolving policies attached to government funds that require contractors and suppliers to feature varying amounts of U.S.-made content in their products and services. To commemorate this week, here is a refresher on “Made in America” and what it means for government contractors and suppliers. What does “Made in America” mean? Under Executive Order 14005, the Administration defined “Made in America” laws as “all statutes, regulations, rules, and Executive Orders relating to Federal financial assistance awards or Federal procurement, including those that refer to “Buy America” or “Buy American,” that require, or provide a preference for, the purchase or acquisition of goods, products, or materials produced in the United States, including iron, steel, and manufactured goods offered in the United States.” Generally speaking, “Made in America” or “Buy American” requirements refer to:
    1. The Buy American Act (BAA) of 1933, establishing domestic sourcing preferences for unmanufactured and manufactured articles, materials, and supplies procured by the federal government for public use, including those used on federal construction contracts;
    Reprinted courtesy of Sarah Barney, Seyfarth and Amy Hoang, Seyfarth Ms. Barney may be contacted at Ms. Hoang may be contacted at Read the full story...

    United States Supreme Court Backtracks on Recent Trajectory Away from Assertions of General Jurisdiction in Mallory v. Norfolk Southern

    August 01, 2023 —
    Washington, D.C. (June 28, 2023) – On June 27, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a sharply divided opinion that appears to backtrack on the Court’s steady trajectory away from assertions of general jurisdiction in recent years, e.g. Goodyear Dunlop Tires Operations, S.A. v. Brown, 564 U.S. 915, 919 (2011), Daimler AG v. Bauman, 134 S. Ct. 746 (2014), BNSF Railway Co. v. Tyrrell, 2017, 137 S. Ct. 1549 (2017). Relying on a case from 1917, Pennsylvania Fire Ins. Co. of Philadelphia v. Gold Issue Mining & Milling Co., 243 U. S. 93 (1917), Justice Gorsuch, writing on behalf of the plurality, (Justices Gorsuch, Thomas, Sotomayor, and Jackson) (Justice Alito concurring) found that Norfolk Southern “consented” to jurisdiction in Mallory via 42 Pa. Cons. Stat. §5301(a)(2)(i),(b) by registering to do business in Pennsylvania. This statute, 42 Pa. Cons. Stat. §5301, specifically permits jurisdiction over a corporation “incorporat[ed] under or qualifi[ed]as a foreign corporation under the laws of this Commonwealth … for any cause of action that may asserted against him, whether or not arising from acts enumerated in this section.” In Pennsylvania Fire, the U.S. Supreme Court addressed the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution in connection with a Missouri law that required an out-of-state insurance company desiring to transact any business in the state to file paperwork agreeing to (1) appoint a state official to serve as the company’s agent for service of process and (2) accept service on that official as valid in any suit. After more than a decade of complying with the law, Pennsylvania Fire was served with process and argued that the Missouri law violated due process. The Court unanimously found that there was “no doubt” that Pennsylvania Fire could be sued in Missouri because it had agreed to accept service of process in Missouri on any suit as a condition of doing business there. Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Charles S. Anderson, Lewis Brisbois
    Mr. Anderson may be contacted at

    Traub Lieberman Partner Eric D. Suben and Associate Laura Puhala Win Summary Judgment in Favor of Insurer, Determining it has No Duty to Defend

    September 18, 2023 —
    In a declaratory judgment action brought before the United States District Court, Eastern District of New York, Traub Lieberman Partner Eric D. Suben and Associate Laura Puhala won summary judgment in favor of Plaintiff Foremost Signature Insurance Co. (“Foremost”), obtaining a declaration that it has no obligation to defend or indemnify Defendant 170 Little East Neck Road LLC (“Little East”) in an underlying state court personal injury action. In the underlying action, a self-employed financial advisor leasing a suite for her business on the second floor of the property at 170 Little East Neck Road (the “Property”), sued Little East in New York Supreme Court, Suffolk County, alleging injuries resulting from slipping on ice on a walkway near an exterior door at the Property. Reprinted courtesy of Eric D. Suben, Traub Lieberman and Laura S. Puhala, Traub Lieberman Mr. Suben may be contacted at Ms. Puhala may be contacted at Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Traub Lieberman

    Anchoring Abuse: Evolution & Eradication

    October 09, 2023 —
    Over the past few years, the plaintiff bar has expanded its use of improper anchoring tactics. Historically, improper anchoring was seen as a risky tactic in which a plaintiff’s counsel would suggest an outrageous figure for pain and suffering during summation in the hope that the lay jury would either award it or split the difference (cut the suggested figure by half) and, either way, return an excessive or runaway verdict. Plaintiff counsel deployed the tactic infrequently through the turn of the century for fear of alienating the jury by appearing greedy. Two interrelated factors happened to change this dynamic. First, the plaintiff bar worked extremely hard in the intervening years with great success to shed its “ambulance chaser” stereotype by marketing itself as the “protector of the vulnerable”. Second, with the rise in Reptile and punitive tactics spawned in part by the publication of the Reptile handbook, the plaintiff bar also discovered that juries were not alienated by outrageous anchors as long as they were preceded by Reptile commentary essentially to “prime” the jury to punish the defendant rather than compensate the plaintiff with its award. This is not speculation. I recall sitting outside a courtroom with one of New York’s top plaintiff attorneys in 2006 during deliberations on a catastrophic personal injury trial, during which he conceded to me that he was worried he had asked the jury for too large a figure (it was not even eight figures). A decade later in 2016, that same attorney felt no trepidation in requesting nearly $100 million for a comparable injury. He fed the jurors a steady diet of Reptile tactics from start to finish and they dutifully awarded the requested figure. Our research confirms that this two-step strategy (Reptile + improper anchor) preceded every New York nuclear verdict returned from 2010-2022. The same is almost certainly true of most nuclear verdicts in other jurisdictions. Reprinted courtesy of Tim Capowski, Kahana Feld and Chris Theobalt, Kahana Feld Mr. Capowski may be contacted at Mr. Theobalt may be contacted at Read the full story...

    Traub Lieberman Partner Stephen Straus Wins Spoliation Motion in Favor of Defendant

    June 05, 2023 —
    Traub Lieberman Partner Steve Straus represented a refrigeration installation and service company in a subrogation action filed by a property insurer after paying a claim related to extensive water damage at premises on Long Island, New York. The premises owner purchased a refrigerator, which was sold without a hose to connect to the water source inside the premises. The defendant retailer retained Traub Lieberman’s client to install the refrigerator. Rather than complete the installation using a new water line, the installer used the existing line from the refrigerator that was being replaced. Approximately one week after installation, the owner’s son discovered water on the floor near the refrigerator, and significant water damage in the basement of the residence. The owner filed a claim with the insurer, which sent an investigator to the premises. The retailer also sent a technician to investigate and replace the water supply line. It was reportedly determined that the original line had failed, causing the water release. After the repair, the owner’s son took possession of the old water line, which he kept for a couple of years and then discarded. The insurer initiated a subrogation action against the retailer and the installation company, alleging that the water release was caused by the defendants’ failure to replace the water line when the new unit was installed. Plaintiff claimed that photographs of the old line established that it had been damaged or defective. Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Stephen D. Straus, Traub Lieberman
    Mr. Straus may be contacted at

    Governmental Action Exclusion Bars Claim for Damage to Insured's Building

    November 27, 2023 —
    The lower court's decision finding no coverage based upon the governmental action exclusion was affirmed by the Appellate Court of Illinois. McCann Plumbing, Heating & Cooling v. Pekin Ins. Co., 2023 Ill.App. LEXIS 300 (Ill. App. Ct. Aug. 23, 2023). McCann purchased a building to use for its heating, ventilation, and air conditioning business. The building was surrounded by two unihhabited properties which often flooded. The city determined that a building on the adjacent property had to be demolished. In the course of destruction, the McCann's building was damaged, leaving a portion of their building open to the elements. McCann sought coverage from Pekin for damage incurred in the demolition. The policy provided coverage for "direct physical loss of or damage to" the covered property. Pekin denied coverage under the policy's governmental action exclusion, which provided,
    We will not pay for loss or damage caused directly or indirectly by any of the following: . . . c. Governmental Action Seizure or destruction of property by order of governmental authority . . .
    Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Tred R. Eyerly, Damon Key Leong Kupchak Hastert
    Mr. Eyerly may be contacted at

    Super Lawyers Selects Haight’s Melvin Marcia for Its 2023 Northern California Rising Stars List

    July 16, 2023 —
    Congratulations to Melvin Marcia who was selected to the 2023 Northern California Rising Stars list. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to receive this honor. Super Lawyers, part of Thomson Reuters, is a rating service of outstanding 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 a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys. The Super Lawyers lists are published nationwide in Super Lawyers magazines and in leading city and regional magazines and newspapers across the country. Super Lawyers magazines also feature editorial profiles of attorneys who embody excellence in the practice of law. Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Melvin F. Marcia, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP
    Mr. Marcia may be contacted at

    Incorporation by Reference in Your Design Services Contract– What Does this Mean, and Are You at Risk? (Law Note)

    June 19, 2023 —
    Has an Owner ever asked you to sign his contract before you started work on a new design project? Rhetorical question– this happens all the time, right? Especially in commercial work, developers or owners typically are not happy to simply agree to your Proposal for Services, but instead want you to sign *their* contract. There are some risks with that you should be aware of — one of which is the seemingly arcane and legalistic language that reads something like this:
    “The Developer’s contract with Owner is hereby incorporated by reference.”
    Read the full story...
    Reprinted courtesy of Melissa Dewey Brumback, Ragsdale Liggett
    Ms. Brumback may be contacted at