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The Punch List

Doug Hanson

The Punch List provides you with a review of current state and federal cases, as well as legislative and regulatory changes, affecting the construction industry. Some of the topics include contracts, classification of workers, construction bidding, independent contractors, negligence, construction defects, liens, insurance claims, and various other important topics in the industry.  Click on the subscription button below to customize your updates.
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A valid oral contract found despite no evidence of a single conversation

Wednesday, 19 November 2014 12:00


A general contractor and a subcontractor had a substantial business relationship, wherein the subcontractor was hired to perform work for the general contractor for 198 jobs and was paid approximately two million dollars over a period of eight years.  The general contractor developed residential and commercial properties.  The subcontractor was hired by the general contractor to build concrete curbs.  Generally, the general contractor would initial the contact with the subcontractor and request a bid from the subcontractor to construct curbs for a construction project.  The subcontractor would submit a bid, and the general contractor would send a purchase order to the subcontractor, who would then perform whatever work was set forth in the purchase order.  After the work was completed, the subcontractor would send an invoice to the general contractor, who normally paid within two to three months.  However, after nonpayment of four invoices, the subcontractor filed a lawsuit, seeking the outstanding balance owed.  The lawsuit alleged breach of contract, unjust enrichment and a violation of the Pennsylvania Contractor and Subcontractor Payment Act (“CASPA”).  The lower court found in favor of the subcontractor and held the general contractor breached an oral agreement. The general contractor appealed, arguing that CASPA does not apply to the work performed by the subcontractor and an oral agreement did not exist.


Court certifies a class of employees based on the same construction site

Thursday, 16 October 2014 10:41


A federal district court in Florida recently sided with the plaintiffs and conditionally certified a class of individuals who were simultaneously employed by two construction companies and were allegedly not properly compensated for their work.


What is Up With the OFCCP?: Federal Contractors and Subcontractors Take Note!

Tuesday, 16 September 2014 15:32


In case you missed it, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”) has had a busy spring and summer.  The wave began as the Final Rules applicable to protected veterans (known as VEVRAA) and to individuals with disabilities (commonly referred to as Section 503) became effective on March 24, 2014.  Because of this change, the OFCCP stated that 2014 would be a ‘transitional year’ for federal contractors and subcontractors.  Thus, presumably, the OFCCP will try to help contractors come into compliance with the new regulations, as opposed to strict enforcement.  Nonetheless, this ‘transitional year’ has not appeared to result in less compliance audits.  Instead, the OFCCP has recently sent its second big wave of Compliance Evaluation letters noticing audits.


Does my company’s liability for installing asbestos ever end?

Wednesday, 13 August 2014 09:49


While you are probably looking for a solid answer one way or the other, you should know better by now.  As is the status quo for the legal community, the answer to the above question is, it depends.  In Pennsylvania, however, a recent decision by the Pennsylvania Superior Court, its appellate-level court, confirms that asbestos mesothelioma cases do have an expiration date for claims related to construction improvements on real estate.


Three elements to a Tennessee breach of contract case

Friday, 08 August 2014 10:11


A Nashville, Tennessee construction project got off to a rocky start when the owner of the property terminated the general contractor after the subcontractor filed suit against the general contractor for breach of contract. The subcontractor sought to recover damages for unpaid work performed and for damages resulting from delays caused by the general contractor.  Tennessee courts approach the damages issue in breach of contract cases with the intent of placing “the plaintiff as nearly as possible in the same position she would have been in had the contract been performed. The non-breaching party, however, is not to be put in any better position by recovery of damages for the breach of the contract. The non-breaching party must show there was a valid contract between the parties, and the other party breached that contract, causing the non-breaching party to suffer as a result.


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