When contractors fail to do their job and use inferior building materials, the results can lead to a myriad of construction defects in a home, commercial building, and any structure that surrounds buildings such as sidewalks, landscapes and streets.
This poses hazardous conditions that can lead to serious injury. As personal injury attorneys working in Savannah for a combined 60 years, Friedman and Martin provide strong representation to clients with a wide range of personal injury claims, including construction defects.
Construction defects can cause devastating accidents. For example, a construction crew may finish building a home and after the homeowner moves in, the homeowner discovers after falling down the stairs there is a defect with the stairs, which were not build in compliance with proper safety codes.
Also, construction defects lead to stucco problems, foundation problems, roofing issues, framing issues, leaks in the walls and/or ceilings, mold problems, flooring issues, rotting wood and termites and many others. It is important to call us as soon as you discover the problem, since time deadlines apply to filing suit once you have discovered the defect . You will also need to have an expert look at the issue to determine the cause, and this expert may need to testify in your case.
We rely on experts such as structural or mechanical engineers, experienced plumbers, contractors, framers, and foundation experts to provide their opinions to determine the following:
• Were any building codes violated?
• Were the plans and specifications followed?
• Did the design and engineering meet industry standards?
• Was the construction performed in a reasonable and workmanlike manner according to the construction industry’s normal standards?
• Does the condition of the defect cause the home to not meet the buyer’s reasonable expectations?
Construction Defects Vary – Speak with an Attorney
Construction defect lawsuits are highly complex and often involve many parties. Depending on where the defect is, you may come to us as an employee, homeowner, or consumer.
Common Examples of Construction Defect Claims and Why They Happen
Construction defects happen in the commercial and residential sector. They typically are found after the project is complete, but these defects can also arise while during the construction process.
Negligence-based claims state that the duty of care by one party was breached (broken), and that breach resulted in damages. For example, a balcony collapses and results in a death and injury of multiple individuals. A building contractor is brought into question after it is revealed that the wooden joists supporting the balcony were rotten due to water infiltration and mold growth. Although concealed under stucco, there was discoloration cleaned by maintenance but the contractor had refused to fix any issues after the one-year warranty had expired. In this type of case, the contractor could be held responsible for any injuries that result from this negligence.
Breach of Contract- against the Builder
In the breach of contract situation, there must be a valid contract signed by each member of the party. For example, a buyer purchases a house from a builder; therefore, they signed a contract with that builder. However, the home is found to be defective or dangerous, and has caused a serious injury.
In this situation, the homeowner can use breach of contract as the basis of their lawsuit, because the contractor had a contract specifically stating his or her duties.
Breach of Warranty
In a breach of warranty situation, the issues arise out of the warranty for the product or property. For example, a construction company offers a one-year warranty on a completed project. However, in less than one year a defect is discovered, yet the builder refuses to act on it. Then, after being left in a state of disrepair, that defect leads to a serious injury. Now the builder could be sued for a breach of warranty.
Construction defects can also involve product liability. For example, if defective products are sold to the consumer, the company that supplies those defective products could be held liable for any damages that are the direct result of such negligence.
When a product is defective the company that installed the product, manufactured that product, or distributed it could be held liable.
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