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09.05.2018 // EDUCATION & PUBLIC AGENCY CONSTRUCTION LAW
Considerations for Public Agency Use of Construction Manager / General Contractor Procurement
Many school districts and other public agencies are considering using a special process for capital projects, by engaging the contractor through the construction manager / general contractor (“CM/GC”) method. Use of this procurement method requires several extra steps that are not applicable to the standard bid process. Special care must be taken in its implementation....
05.08.2017 // THE POLICYHOLDER REPORT
Pitfalls abound in settling around an insurer acting in bad faith
Businesses buy liability insurance to protect themselves from lawsuits brought by people injured by the business’s employees. But after the injury, and after the plaintiff has sued, the main concern is often between the injured plaintiff and the insurer for the business that doesn’t want to pay. In this context, the defendant often settles the...
03.01.2017 // THE POLICYHOLDER REPORT
Oregon Court of Appeals rejects insurer’s attempt to cast its own insured as just another insurer
You’re sued. You tender the defense of the lawsuit to your insurer, but it refuses to defend you. You settle the case and then file a lawsuit against your insurer for what it should have paid to defend you while sitting out of the fight. You win in the trial court, in the Court of...
02.08.2017 // THE POLICYHOLDER REPORT
A “recovery” against insurers in Oregon does not require a money judgment
Last week, the Oregon Supreme Court made it just a little easier for an insured to recover the attorney fees that it has been forced to spend in compelling an insurer to pay up. In Long v. Farmers Ins. Co. of Oregon, the Supreme Court resolved an old ambiguity about what “recovery” means under the...
01.10.2017 // EDUCATION & PUBLIC AGENCY CONSTRUCTION LAW
Record-Keeping on Your Next Construction Project
Once the dust has settled after a remodel or new construction is completed, it is tempting to put the project in the rear-view mirror and move on. However, that can lead to problems down the road if the construction project has not been properly documented. At the end of the process the owner should be...
01.10.2017 // EDUCATION & PUBLIC AGENCY CONSTRUCTION LAW
New Law on Time Limits for Concerns with Construction Workmanship
In Oregon, there is a time limit for a school district, or any property owner, to raise concerns with its contractors about potentially faulty construction workmanship. Pursuant to Oregon Revised Statutes 12.135(2), a school district as a public body has 10 years from “substantial completion” of a construction project to file a claim against a contractor...
12.14.2016 // THE POLICYHOLDER REPORT
Oregon Supreme Court reaffirms broad nature of the duty to defend, even in the face of ambiguous or unclear allegations
Back in August 2015, I wrote this post about the Oregon Court of Appeals opinion in West Hills Development Co. v. Chartis Claims, Inc., where the court confirmed that Oregon’s broad duty to defend extended to parties claiming rights as “additional insureds.” Last week, the Oregon Supreme Court affirmed that decision, broadly holding that “regardless...
03.14.2018 // EDUCATION & PUBLIC AGENCY CONSTRUCTION LAW
Facilities Going Green
In recent years, we have seen many positive impacts from the new construction of “Green” school facilities around Oregon. However, it does not necessarily take a new building or a laborious remodel to create a more sustainable environment. Whether your buildings are brand new or years old, it takes just a little extra energy to...
12.09.2016 // THE POLICYHOLDER REPORT
Florida Supreme Court holds that the concurrent cause doctrine is alive and well
Last week, the Florida Supreme Court put policyholders’ minds at ease in Sebo v. American Home Assurance Co. by overturning a lower appellate court’s decision holding that the concurrent cause doctrine had no place in Florida first-party property claims. Until the appellate court’s decision in 2013, Florida courts had routinely applied the concurrent cause doctrine...
10.20.2016 // THE POLICYHOLDER REPORT
Retroactive dates punch gaps into insured’s coverage
Most professional-liability policies are written on a “claims-made” basis, which provides coverage for lawsuits filed against the insured during the policy period — even for damages caused by some professional negligence that occurred long before the policy was issued (and, perhaps, for some mistake at a time when the insured had no insurance coverage at...