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Construction defect cases and the defenses

Whether your construction is residential or commercial, issues may arise at some point that lead to a lawsuit. In some cases, that will involve a construction defect, which is included under the umbrella of breach of contract. This legal issue may pop up at any time of the project with some defects becoming apparent during the construction and others weeks after completion. The goal for Indiana companies is to understand what defenses they have in battling these types of lawsuits. The following includes some of the most commonly defenses used in past litigation.

Contractual defense

In many cases, the most simple and effective defense to use in construction defect litigation is contractual. In this defense, there are essentially three areas to point to as proof that you did not breach your contractual agreements. Those are:

  • Integration clause
  • Express waiver of warranty
  • Release information
  • Statutory defense

Each state in the union has its own laws in regard to the statute of limitations. This term involves the time period of when lawsuits are no longer allowed to be submitted. Thus, it is important to research when exactly the accuser found out about the issue. In Indiana, that time frame is a two-year time limit for misdemeanors.

Common law defense

One of the other main defenses for contractors to use is the common law defense, particularly with the Spearin Doctrine. The defense states that if an owner provides a contractor with plans of how to finish the project, they are not liable for damages after the fact.

Lawsuits are a common occurrence within the construction industry, so it is important to obtain the services of an attorney who is experienced in these types of litigation. This may prevent you from making common legal mistakes along the way.