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    Attapulgus, Georgia

    Georgia Builders Right To Repair Current Law Summary:

    Current Law Summary: SB 563 stipulates that prior to filing a claim, a homeowner must give the contractor 30 day written notice detailing the nature of the defect. In response, contractor must provide (within 30 days of receipt) a written reply containing an offer of settlement, requirement of inspection or rejection. The law provides definitions relating to construction; offers immunity from liability for certain conditions; and sets up an alternative dispute resolution process.

    Construction Expert Witness Contractors Licensing
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    No state license for general contracting required. License is required for Air Conditioning, Electrical, and Plumbing trades.

    Construction Expert Witness Contractors Building Industry
    Association Directory
    Home Builders Association of South GA
    Local # 1194
    PO Box 2950
    Valdosta, GA 31603

    Golden Isles Home Builders Association
    Local # 1135
    218 Rose Drive
    Brunswick, GA 31520

    Home Builders Association of Albany & SW GA Inc
    Local # 1108
    PO Box 70424
    Albany, GA 31708

    Home Builders Association of Greater Savannah
    Local # 1188
    7116 Hodgson Memorial Dr
    Savannah, GA 31406

    Statesboro Home Builders Association
    Local # 1191
    1223 Merchants Way
    Statesboro, GA 30458

    Greater Columbus Home Builders Association
    Local # 1148
    6432 Bradley Park Dr
    Columbus, GA 31904

    Home Builders Association Of Warner Robins
    Local # 1196
    PO Box 8297
    Warner Robins, GA 31095

    Construction Expert Witness News and Information
    For Attapulgus Georgia

    "Your Work" Exclusion Bars Coverage

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    With over 4500 construction defect and claims related expert designations, the Attapulgus, Georgia Construction Expert Directory provides a streamlined multi-disciplinary expert retention and support solution to legal professionals and construction practice groups seeking effective resolution of construction defect and claims litigation. BHA provides construction claims evaluation, testimony, and support services to the industry's leading construction practice groups, Fortune 500 builders, real estate investment trusts, risk managers, owners, as well as a variety of municipalities and government offices. In connection with in house assets which include building envelope and design experts, forensic engineers, forensic architects, and construction cost and scheduling consultants, the firm brings national experience and local capabilities to Attapulgus and the surrounding areas.

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    Attapulgus, Georgia

    Insured's Failure to Prove Entire Collapse of Building Leads to Dismissal

    July 19, 2021 —
    The Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court's dismissal of the insured's claim for damage to her home caused by collapse. Stewart v. Metropolitan Lloyds Ins. Co. of Texas, 2021 U.S. App. LEXIS 14221 (5th Girl May 13, 2021). One evening, the insured was awakened by a loud bang that shook her house. The next morning, she noticed the damage to her home, cracked sheetrock and sunken floors. She cut a hole through her floor and discovered that a couple of joists below her subfloor had broken and fallen away. The insured filed a claim with Metropolitan. Metropolitan hired an expert who found broken and deteriorated floor joists, deteriorated floor decking, walls not plumb and gaps in the wall-to-ceiling interface. It was determined that the rot in the floor joists and subfloor decking were caused by a combination of termite damage and exposure to moisture over the lifespan of the structure, resulting in the broken floor joists and unlevel floors. The insured's own expert agreed that termite damage and wood rot were the cause of the foundation collapse failure. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Tred R. Eyerly, Damon Key Leong Kupchak Hastert
    Mr. Eyerly may be contacted at

    Cal/OSHA Approves COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards; Executive Order Makes Them Effective Immediately

    July 11, 2021 —
    On June 17, 2021, California's Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (Standards Board) passed amended COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS). Gov. Gavin Newsom issued an Executive Order to make the amended ETS effective as soon as filed with the Secretary of State. The Office of Administrative Law (OAL) filed them, and the Secretary of State posted them, making the ETS effective immediately. These changes attempt to bring the ETS in alignment with recent changes to California Department of Public Health Order and the latest guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC). Highlights of the changes to the ETS can be found here. Face Coverings in the Workplace; Elimination of Physical Distancing Notably, fully vaccinated employees do not have to wear a face covering indoors except in limited circumstances. Unvaccinated workers will still need to wear face coverings indoors (unless they are alone in a room or eating and drinking) and in shared vehicles. All employees regardless of vaccination status do not have to wear masks outdoors. Unvaccinated employees must be trained that face coverings are recommended outdoors for individuals who are not fully vaccinated when six feet of physical distance cannot be maintained. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Leila S. Narvid, Payne & Fears LLP
    Ms. Narvid may be contacted at

    One-Upmanship by Contractors In Prevailing Wage Decision Leads to a Bad Result for All . . . Perhaps

    July 19, 2021 —
    Fights between contractors can be a bit like Mad magazine’s “Spy vs. Spy” with each side trying to out outwit and one-up one another. The next case, Division of Labor Standards Enforcement v. Built Pacific, Inc., Case No. D076601 (March 15, 2021), is a case in point. The Built Pacific Case Built Pacific, Inc. was a subcontractor to Austin Sundt Joint Venture on a public works project known as the San Diego Regional Airport Authority Project. In 2015, following an investigation by the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE), the DLSE issued a Civil Wage Penalty Assessment of $119,319.76 based on Built Pacific’s failure to pay prevailing wages. The DLSE also named Austin Sundt in the Civil Wage Assessment pursuant to Labor Code 1743 which makes contractors and subcontractors jointly and severally liable for wage violations. As a result of the Civil Wage Assessment, Austin Sundt withheld approximately $70,000 in retention from Built Pacific. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Garret Murai, Nomos LLP
    Mr. Murai may be contacted at

    Florida Supreme Court Adopts Federal Summary Judgment Standard, Substantially Conforming Florida’s Rule 1.510 to Federal Rule 56

    June 07, 2021 —
    Effective May 1, 2021, the Florida courts will transition to a new summary judgment standard meant to “align Florida’s summary judgment standard with that of the federal courts and of the supermajority of states that have already adopted the federal summary judgment standard.” In re Amends. to Fla. Rule of Civ. Pro. 1.510, 309 So. 3d 192, 192 (Fla. 2020). Consistent with this amendment, Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.510 has been amended to adopt the federal summary judgment rule, with exceptions for timing-related issues. The Florida Supreme Court’s most recent opinion on rule 1.510 and the text of new rule 1.510 can be found here. As background, on December 31, 2020, the Florida Supreme Court adopted the federal summary judgment standard by amending Florida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.510(c) to include the following sentence: “The summary judgment standard provided for in this rule shall be construed and applied in accordance with the federal summary judgment standard articulated in Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317 (1986); Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477 U.S. 242 (1976); and Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574 (1986) [(the ‘Celotex trilogy’)].” In re Amends. to Fla. Rule of Civ. Pro. 1.510, 309 So. 3d at 196. The court’s amendment was slated to take effect on May 1, 2021, subject to a public comment period. The court also sought guidance from the Florida Bar’s Civil Procedure Rules Committee. After careful consideration of numerous responses, the court ultimately chose to adopt the substance of the text from federal rule 56. Along with its amendments, the court provides substantial guidance as to how the Florida courts and practitioners should interpret the new rule. A summary of the court’s thorough discussion follows. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of Lewis Brisbois

    Asserting Non-Disclosure Claim Involving Residential Real Property and Whether Facts Are “Readily Observable”

    September 29, 2021 —
    Under Florida law, there is a claim dealing with the purchase and sale of residential real property known as a Johnson v. Davis or a non-disclosure claim: “[W]here the seller of a home knows of facts materially affecting the value of the property which are not readily observable and are not known to the buyer, the seller is under a duty to disclose them to the buyer.” Lorber v. Passick, 46 Fla.L.Weekly D1952a (Fla. 4th DCA 2021). A seller’s duty to disclose extends to a seller’s real estate agent/broker. Id. A non-disclosure claim is asserted by the buyer of residential real property when the buyer discovers defects or damages with the real property that he believes materially affects the value of the property. While there may be the sentiment these are easy claims to prove, they are not. Remember, a non-disclosure claim deals with facts that materially affect the value of residential real property and are NOT readily observable. The use of the language “readily observable” has been found to mean:
    “[I]nformation [that] is within the diligent attention of any buyer. To exercise diligent attention…a buyer would be required to investigate any information furnished by the seller that a reasonable person in the buyer’s position would investigate and take reasonable steps to ascertain the material facts relating to the property and to discovery them—if, of course, they are reasonably ascertainable.”
    Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of David Adelstein, Kirwin Norris, P.A.
    Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at

    Rather Than Limit Decision to "That Particular Part" of Developer's Policy Necessary to Bar Coverage, 10th Circuit Renders Questionable Decision on Exclusion j(6)

    September 06, 2021 —
    The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, applying Colorado law, recently extended Colorado’s broad application of the phrase “arising out of” in insurance interpretation, barring an insured real estate developer from receiving a defense to a suit alleging liability for construction of a defective retaining wall and associated resulting damage.1 The decision also included a questionable analysis of the commercial general liability (“CGL”) policy’s exclusion j(6), contradicting both the plain meaning of the exclusion as well as existing 10th Circuit case law. The underlying dispute concerned a land developer, HT Services, LLC, who was sued by the homeowner’s association (“HOA”) of one of its developments. The HOA alleged that HT Services negligently designed and constructed a retaining wall in the community. HT Services had CGL policies from Western Heritage Insurance Company in place from 2010 to 2013 that insured it for liability associated with four acres of land that the community was built upon. HT Services tendered the HOA’s lawsuit to Western Heritage, which declined to defend and indemnify HT Services. After that matter settled, HT Services sued Western Heritage, alleging breach of contract and bad faith. Western Heritage moved for summary judgment, asserting two exclusions, and the District Court granted the motion in Western Heritage’s favor. In upholding the District Court’s decision, the 10th Circuit discussed two exclusions that the District Court determined precluded coverage. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of William S. Bennett, Saxe Doernberger & Vita, P.C.
    Mr. Bennett may be contacted at

    New York Assembly Reconsiders ‘Bad Faith’ Bill

    May 31, 2021 —
    The New York State Assembly is considering A07285, which creates a private right of action for bad faith “if the insurer unreasonably refuses to pay or unreasonably delays payment without substantial justification.” The bill was first introduced in 2013 but was reintroduced on May 3, 2021 and has received some recent attention. According to the bill, an insurer acts unreasonably when it (among other things):
    1. Fails to provide the claimant with accurate information regarding policy provisions relating to the coverage at issue; or
    2. Fails to effectuate in good faith a prompt, fair, and equitable settlement of a claim or portion of a claim and where the insurer failed to reasonably accord at least equal or more favorable consideration to its insured's interests as it did to its own interests, and thereby exposed the insured to a judgment in excess of the policy limits or caused other damage to a claimant; or
    3. Fails to provide a timely written denial of a claimant's claim, or portion thereof, with a full and complete explanation of such denial, including references to specific policy provisions wherever possible; or
    4. Fails to act in good faith by compelling such claimant to initiate a lawsuit to recover under the policy by offering substantially less than the amounts ultimately recovered in such suit; or
    5. Fails to timely provide, on request of the policy holder or the policy holder's representative, all reports or other documentation arising from the investigation of a claim; or
    6. Refuses to pay a claim without conducting a reasonable investigation prior to such refusal.
    Reprinted courtesy of Copernicus T. Gaza, Traub Lieberman, Robert S. Nobel, Traub Lieberman, Craig Rokuson, Traub Lieberman and Eric D. Suben, Traub Lieberman Mr. Gaza may be contacted at Mr. Nobel may be contacted at Mr. Rokuson may be contacted at Mr. Suben may be contacted at Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of

    The 2021 Top 50 Construction Law Firms™

    June 14, 2021 —
    Vaccination rates continue to rise, mandates are loosening for returning to work and school, and a $2 trillion infrastructure bill is looming on the horizon, but contractors remain cautious and counseled by the legal experts who thrive in the complex field of construction law. According to the latest report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, construction employment numbers did not move much in April despite an increased demand for housing and a recovering economy. Due to continued fallout from the pandemic—and what seems like no end in sight for the rising costs of materials—contractors have been turning to construction law firms to navigate delayed projects, interpret contract language, assist in risk mitigation and ensure the road ahead is paved with understandable and protective clauses. For the 2021 survey for the annual U.S. ranking of The Top 50 Construction Law Firms™, Construction Executive’s editorial team reached out to dozens of attorneys at the nation’s best construction law firms to learn how the legal landscape is changing, as well as how legal teams are aiding clients with sharpening contract language and pivoting in response to challenges in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Reprinted courtesy of Cybele Tamulonis, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved. Read the court decision
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    Reprinted courtesy of