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Design-builder Not Negligent Where It Subcontracted Out

Tuesday, November 01, 2011 07:59 am


Defective Design - Work Acceptance

Westfield, LLC and West County Center LLC v. IPC, Inc. et al, U.S. Dist. Lexis 100924 (E.D. Mo. Sept. 8, 2011)

A designer can be liable for defects arising after work acceptance if they were hidden from the owner but foreseeable by the designer.

Westfield, LLC (Westfield) was the contractor on a project to construct a mall and parking garages for project owner West County Center, LLC (WCC). Westfield hired Raider Precast Concrete, Inc. (Raider) to design and construct the parking structures, and Raider subcontracted out the design to Consulting Engineers Group, Inc. (CEG). Four years after work was completed, Westfield and WCC sought remedy for concrete cracking and leaks in the parking structures resulting from construction and design flaws.

Sub designer caught by professional negligence net: CEG sought to dismiss claims against it by citing the acceptance doctrine, "which relieves contractors of liability to those not parties to the contract after [...]

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