By Bruce Jervis
Subcontractors are, of course, responsible for compliance with the project design. If a prime contractor incurs costs as a result of a sub’s noncompliant work, the prime may seek reimbursement through a contractual indemnification action. If an insurer pays out on a property loss caused by a sub’s noncompliant work, the insurer may seek reimbursement through a subrogation action. But, it has long been axiomatic in the construction industry that a project owner, with whom a subcontractor has no contractual relationship, may not sue a sub directly for noncompliant work.
The Texas Supreme Court just abandoned this rule. A subcontractor allegedly failed to properly connect hot water heaters to the water system, resulting in property damage. The court allowed the property owner to sue the subcontractor directly, reasoning that the sub not only breached its contract with the prime contractor but also violated a duty of due care owed to the owner, which arose independently from the sub’s contractual undertaking. ... Read more.
Featured in this Week’s Construction Claims Advisor:
- Owner Allowed to Sue Sub for Negligent Performance of Subcontract Work
- General Statement Superseded by Specific Directive
By Steve Rizer
A draft report that a task group issued earlier this month should be a source of encouragement for those advocates who want the federal government to achieve its self-imposed goals for net-zero-energy (NZE) buildings and, in turn, convince the private sector to follow suit for its structures. In the report, the task group told the U.S. General Services Administration’s (GSA) Office of High-Performance Green Buildings that the U.S. government can convert half of its existing buildings to NZE by 2030 … and perhaps even surpass that mark. ... Read more.