Large construction projects involve many different subcontractors, vendors, and workers. When everything goes well, the process can be similar to a well-choreographed scene in a movie. When there are construction defects, however, these consequences may occur:
- Repairs to the defective part of the project
- Delays to every pending stage in the construction sequence
- Change orders needed because of the defect
- Safety hazards that can lead to injuries
- The temporary inability to use or occupy the building
Depending on the size of the building project and the specific facts of the construction defect, a problem like this can cause astronomical expenses. If you are a property owner or buyer who suffered financial losses, a Franklin defective construction lawyer could help you hold the responsible parties accountable for your money damages.
You can call the Cochran Law Firm – Nashville today at (615) 651-7451 for a free consultation. There is no obligation.
Four Types of Legal Issues in Defective Construction Cases
Whether the issue is with residential or commercial property in Franklin, a defective construction claim can involve one or more of these legal theories:
A party’s carelessness or mistake can cause defective construction. For example, a subcontractor who sold and installed a gas range in a kitchen might have done the installation incorrectly. The employee originally scheduled to perform the work could have been out sick, so a coworker with little experience in the installation of gas appliances could have filled in and installed the gas range for the customer.
As a result of the defective installation, carbon monoxide fumes could have built up inside the home. Some of the family members could have been sickened because of the odorless gas. The victims could have died or sustained subsequent brain damage from exposure to the fumes.
This hypothetical subcontractor had a duty to use qualified installers. The subcontractor negligently would have failed in this responsibility, in this situation. The negligence of the subcontractor caused harm, so he would be liable for any injuries and deaths caused by the defective range installation.
Breach of Contract
Sometimes a general contractor will try to sell property without making repairs to known defective construction. If someone gets hurt because of a significant hazard that resulted from the defective construction, the injured person could take action under both a theory of negligence and breach of contract. The building contract should contain a provision that requires the builder to construct a home that is not defective or dangerous.
Breach of Warranty
Building contracts typically include warranties from the contractor to the owner. Let us say that the contractor built a shopping plaza for a developer. In the contract, the general contractor provided a one-year warranty on the buildings. When a covered defect arises within that time, the contractor is in breach of warranty if he fails to correct the problem.
A company that makes or sells defective products that get used in construction can be strictly liable for harm that results from those items. Going back to the gas range example, imagine that instead of defective installation, the gas range had a manufacturing defect.
Although the appliance may have been installed correctly this time, the defect in the device caused a gas explosion, which burned down the house and took the lives of several people. The company that made the stove could be strictly liable for the harm its defective product caused.
For a free legal consultation with a defective construction injury lawyer serving Franklin, call 615-651-7451
Liability for Design-Related Construction Defects
There are two components to a construction project: the design stage and the building phase. When there is a design defect, the building will have flaws, even if the contractor follows the plans perfectly.
Depending on the facts of the situation, the architect could be liable for flawed building plans. The engineer could be responsible for approving defective building plans. Even the general contractor might have some liability for not noticing errors if the mistakes were obvious on the blueprints. You can call the Cochran Law Firm – Nashville at (615) 651-7451 to learn more. A Franklin defective construction lawyer may talk about your options.
Franklin Defective Construction Injury Lawyer Near Me 615-651-7451
Who Pays for Building-Phase Construction Defects
Construction projects are multi-layered endeavors. The owner hires a general contractor, who engages subcontractors and suppliers. The general contractor has the responsibility to supervise and prevent problems. If the general contractor notices that a subcontractor is performing substandard work, the contractor has an obligation to step in and take action. Both the contractor and subcontractor could have liability for defective construction.
The language of the building contract and subcontractor contracts will control who will have to pay for construction defects that happen at the building phase. Many projects require the contractor to use American Institute of Architects (AIA) forms when hiring subcontractors.
Typically, the general contractor is financially responsible to the owner. The general contractor may then seek reimbursement—also called indemnification—from the negligent subcontractor. The contracts may require all parties to purchase bonds that will pay claims.
Types of Defective Construction by Project Area
Any aspect or component of the structure, its foundation, and the surrounding soil can develop problems because of defective construction. Some project areas involved in defective construction lawsuits can include:
- Plumbing, mechanical, or electrical systems
- Structural stability
- Windows and doors
- Shifting soil
- Water intrusion
- Protection from heat, cold, and water
- Violations of local building codes
If your building project experienced a different type of defective construction, you can give us a call to find out if we handle your kind of claim. If so, a lawyer could help.
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How a Franklin Defective Construction Lawyer May Help with Your Claim
Construction defect claims and litigation can be sophisticated and complex. These cases may involve multiple parties and all of their liability insurance carriers. All involved parties may point the finger at everyone else when it comes to blame.
You may decide to hire expert witnesses, like architects and engineers, to prove whose negligence caused the defect. Insurance companies may attempt to wrongfully deny or undervalue your claim. A lawyer will fight for fair compensation for you.
At the Cochran Law Firm – Nashville, we are happy to offer you a free initial consultation. You can call us today at (615) 651-7451 to get started. There is no obligation.