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Monday, November 30, 2009 03:15 am
Higgins Development Partners, LLC, v. Skanska U.S.A.
Supreme Court Of Montana 2009 Mont. LEXIS 428, DA 08-0360 (August 25, 2009)
In cases involving a split disputes clause, take care in alleging who has ultimate responsibility for the claims. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) hired Higgins Development Partners, LLC (Higgins) to build an addition to the Rocky Mountain Lab in Hamilton, Montana. Higgins and Skanska U.S.A. Building, Inc. (Skanska) entered into a construction management agreement regarding the project, with Higgins acting as the development manager and Skanska as construction manager. Skanska subcontracted with Metal Works of Montana, Inc., d/b/a Missoula Sheet Metal and Roofing (Missoula Sheet Metal), to build the roof for the addition. The subcontract incorporated by reference Skanska's agreement with Higgins.
After Missoula Sheet Metal installed the roof, Higgins alleged that the installation was defective and withheld approximately $50,000 in payment from Skanska. Skanska, in turn, withheld that payment from Missoula Sheet Metal pursuant to the pay-if-paid clause in the subcontract.<[...]