Contractors remain liable for defective construction work for a long time. Claims for defective work can be asserted long after the standard one-year warranty period. Unless
restricted by contract, construction defect claims can be asserted until they expire under the applicable Statute of Limitations (6 years) or Statute of Repose (10 years).
Construction defects usually include any deficiency in the performance or furnishing of the design, planning, supervision, inspection, or construction to any new home or building,
where there is a failure to construct the building in a reasonably workmanlike manner or the structure fails to perform in the manner that is reasonably intended. Some of the most common construction defects include:
- Structural Integrity
- Water intrusion
- Thermal and moisture protection
- Doors, windows, and glass
Building or renovating can be exciting, as well as a huge undertaking. Knowing how to choose a contractor and what red flags to look for during that process is important. If you want to avoid lengthy construction timelines and having to hire a second contractor to fix any botched jobs, these are some things to look out for throughout the process. For example, if your contractor wants a large down payment before starting any work. While we understand that no contractors work for free, we want to avoid any advances toward securing large ticket items. Another red flag is a vague contract. We don’t want to assume anything will be completed without specific instruction. The scope of work and every detail should be included in your written agreements. This includes materials used, supplies, equipment, vendors, subcontractors—everything that goes into your project. And last, you should always ask your potential contractor for a copy of their insurance. Being sure that it covers workers’ compensation and general liability is important and helps you know that you hired an ethical contractor to protect both parties. Examples like these are why you need to know when to walk or better yet, run from a contractor who is about to turn your project into a money pit or burn a hole in your wallet.
Generally, courts categorize construction defects in one of four categories: design deficiencies, material deficiencies, construction deficiencies, or subsurface deficiencies. Multiple parties are involved in the duty of care during the construction process and all parties have a legal duty to prevent defects and accidents during the project. This can include
architects, engineers, general contractors, surveyors and project managers.
Finding legal resources is a crucial step in establishing builder neglect and recovering damages. An experienced attorney can help determine damages, know the rules and regulations, and access qualified construction professionals to help owners gain compensation for these defects. Contact the attorneys of Katz, Pryor & DiCuccio, LLP for your initial consultation.