In a matter of first impression, a California Court of Appeal upheld and enforced standard AIA contract language effectively shortening to four years the ten year time limit for bringing claims for latent construction defects. California now joins other states in allowing sophisticated parties to agree on when a claim accrues, limiting the “delayed discovery rule” and shortening the deadline for bringing construction claims.
Under California law, a claim for defective construction must be brought within four years after substantial completion of an improvement, if the construction deficiency is patent (apparent by reasonable inspection). However, if the deficiency is latent (not discoverable by reasonable inspection), the “delayed discovery rule” extends the accrual of a claim until the defects were, or could have been, discovered. This extended deadline is capped by statute at ten years after substantial completion. As a result, the time limit for bringing claims for construction deficiencies in California is typically ten years after substantial completion of an improvement.
via California Court Upholds Contract Clause Shortening Time Limits for Construction Claims | The National Law Review.
Given the increase of today’s mobile technologies available on the construction site … from smart phones, to iPads and tablets, to electronic drawings and specifications … there are going to be new disputes involving those technologies
In particular, I think we are going to find an increase in disputes when it comes to the use of emails as a means of communication among project members. First, email communications tend to be sent “off the cuff” without creating a draft of the communication that can be reviewed by team members. In addition, you may not have the accurate contract provisions in front of you when you are sending an email from the project site, so your communication may not include the appropriate contract references that you need to support your position or claim. Finally, email communications simply tend to be more informal and can lead to “miscommunications” among the project team members.
via Blog Posts From Around the Web | Southeast Construction | McGraw-Hill Construction.