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Categories of liability in construction litigation cases

Imagine you bought a newly constructed, $700,000 home, and several months after you move in, you get hit by a heavy rainstorm -- only to find that the roof leaks. After having someone look into the problem, you find out it's going to cost $20,000 to fix the leaky roof. "Who's going to pay for this?" you'll probably ask.

The fact is, the construction company that was responsible for building your home should pay for the roof repairs, but that doesn't mean that the construction company will volunteer to do it. You might have to file a construction litigation claim to force the construction firm to pay for the repair.

In order to prove the construction company's liability, you may use a variety of causes of action such as:

  • Negligence: This basically means that the company didn't exercise the level of care to prevent a construction defect that a reasonable developer or contractor would have given the circumstances.
  • Breach of contract: This basically means that your home wasn't built according to the specifications of the contract.
  • Breach of warranty: Many new homes come with a warranty that the home will meet a certain standard. If the home doesn't meet the warranty terms, the construction company should repair it or pay you the cost to repair it.
  • A general contractor's strict liability: This doesn't require the homeowner to prove negligence. You will merely have to show that a defect in your home exists that has resulted in damages, which were caused by the defendant.
  • Negligent misrepresentation: Negligent misrepresentation involves a developer telling the plaintiff something without having a basis for actually believing it.
  • Fraud: Fraud involves the developer lying to you about something relating to your home that has caused you to buy a product that you were promised.

Did you buy a home or property that isn't what it should be? If you feel that you have a potential construction litigation claim, it's important to act immediately because you may only have a limited amount of time within which to pursue your claim.

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