Forensic architects can serve multiple purposes throughout and after a construction job is complete. Most commonly, forensic architects are brought in to investigate the root cause of construction defects or building issues after a project is complete. However, forensic architects are also often hired onto a job during the design and construction phase to help identify any unforeseen issues that could be avoided. In these cases forensic architects are often hired as an unbiased 3rd party and act as an additional set of eyes based on the specialized experience they can bring to a job.
Do not believe that asbestos is not being used in building products that you specify or construct. Contrary to popular belief asbestos is not illegal in the U.S. According to the EPA many building products can be manufactured with asbestos.
During Hurricane Wilma a tower crane at a high-rise condominium construction site in Hallendale, Florida suffered a collapse. The building, a 28 story concrete structure, is situated between the Atlantic Ocean and Route A1A, and was under construction at the time of the collapse. The crane was situated on the west side of the building and was connected to the building at the tenth and twentieth floors. The crane was over 300 feet tall. The crane broke at the twentieth floor; the top of the crane fell to the ground while the lower portion was damaged but remained attached to the building. CCA was requested to review the circumstances of the collapse of the crane and provide opinions as to the cause.
It is no secret that construction defect liability claims can become incredibly complicated. When something goes awry after tenants have moved in, the finger pointing game begins. Was it a design flaw or was something installed improperly? Did equipment fail or did the property manager improperly maintain it? Should the construction contractor have realized the engineers made a mistake? When the stakes become large, which insurance company should be on the hook?
The verdict is in! After many years and a 38-day trial a Florida six-person jury has ordered one of America's largest home builders to pay up to $9.6 million in damages. This amount is due to alleged defective stucco, roofs, and windows in a 240-unit complex located in Jacksonville, a recent Durability and Design article explains
Construction defect insurance cases can be challenging. These cases often have between 15 and 50 parties involved with many contractors, insurance policies and attorneys, which only add to their complexity, a recent California Lawyer article explains.
“We have very extensive pre-mediation conference calls and briefings—recently I worked on a matter where the briefs, with the expert reports, went to 700 pages.” (For more about our thoughts on Document Management, read our blog post here)
Working since January on their fourth attempt at passing construction defect reform legislation, Colorado state lawmakers are still having difficulty passing any meaningful reform. First reported in January by The Denver Post, builders are hesitant to start new projects in the state - leading to a lack of condo units available for purchase, and no new condo project applications.
"Reform proponents blame Colorado's construction-defects law for the condo shortage, saying the law makes it too easy for homeowners to sue over cracked foundations, leaky windows and other structural problems.
Effective document management is critical to successful litigation.
Whether it is a highly complex case with hundreds of thousands of files and millions of pages or a quick trial with just a few hundred documents, attorneys need a manageable way to store, search, review and cull documents to tell the most powerful story.
There are plenty of document management systems on the market – the key is choosing the right system for each case. Some solutions, as powerful and stable as they may be, can be cumbersome, expensive and frankly just overkill, while simpler systems sometimes simply are not up to the job.
When considering the use of a Construction Manager at Risk (CMAR), it is critical that an owner understands the limitations of liability that a CMAR has in regards to their design review services. As PretiFlaherty reported on September 3rd, the Massachusetts Supreme Court recently clarified the construction manager’s role.