Houston Construction Defect Lawyer
Construction Defect Claims in Texas
In the world of construction, a project free of defects mitigates the risk of legal claims certain to arise after projects that fail to meet certain standards require costly repairs and delays. Unfortunately, not every project is free from defects – whether in design, construction, or the products being used.
At Hendershot Cowart, P.C., our attorneys represent property owners, contractors, subcontractors, and others in litigation and arbitration arising from construction defects across Texas and beyond.
Backed by over a century of collective legal experience and a proven record of success in construction disputes, our team has the breadth of knowledge and skill required of these complex claims.
Why Choose Hendershot Cowart, P.C.?
- Serving Clients Across Texas & U.S. Since 1987
- Proven Results in Complex Construction Defect Claims
- Flexibility in Litigating or Arbitrating Resolutions
- A Focus on Closely Guiding Clients Through High-Stakes Disputes
What is a Construction Defect?
Commercial construction projects are subject to the terms and conditions of a contract, as well as the rules and regulations of the industry and municipality in which they are built. Generally, contracts between owners and contractors and between contractors and subcontractors will typically require work to:
- Be constructed in line with project plans and specifications;
- Meet all applicable building codes and standards; and
- Be in accordance with accepted standards of the industry and good construction practice.
When projects fail to conform to contractual requirements, or fail to comply with accepted principles, industry standards for workmanship and care, and / or regulatory code, it may constitute a construction defect, and may give rise to litigation. This can apply to defects involving the construction and design of a project, which is why determining a defect’s underlying cause (i.e. a defective design, defective construction, or defects in products and materials used) is one of the most important steps in preparing defect claims. It’s also a task that demands meticulous investigation and collaboration with relevant experts prior to litigation.
While the best way to avoid liability and the disruption of litigation is to structure sound contracts and quality control strategies to prevent claims from happening in the first place, avoiding defect disputes is not always possible. As such, our construction law team at Hendershot Cowart, P.C. provides immediate representation to clients who need to bring or defend against various claims, including those involving:
- Defective design, faulty, engineering, and inadequate plans or specifications
- Use of unapproved or defective materials, including defective concrete
- Failure to meet building, electrical, and safety code
- Environmental violations
- Grading and soil problems, water damage, drainage, and flooding
- Roof collapse, structural and foundation problems
- Nonconforming construction materials
Our attorneys leverage extensive experience advocating for Plaintiffs and Defendants in complex construction disputes, and represent a range of individuals and entities. This includes property owners, developers, general contractors and subcontractors, architects and engineers, suppliers and vendors, product manufacturers, lenders, and more.
Defective Design: Construction Defect Claims Against Architects
Contracts between architects and owners, or architects and consultants (i.e. engineers), require a project’s design to comply with applicable building code and standards, and meet a certain standard of care. When design professionals fail to meet these obligations, there may be grounds for legal action.
In Texas, construction claims filed against an architect, engineer, or surveyor over defective design must be accompanied by a supporting Certificate of Merit, an affidavit of a third-party professional who is licensed, registered, and knowledgeable in the same professional field as the defendant, and willing to testify about their work and alleged defects (Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 150.001 et seq.)
Failure to retain an expert, follow procedural rules, or structure sound arguments when bringing claims against design professionals can lead to case dismissal or unfavorable results.
Construction Defect Cause of Action & Remedy
Resolving construction defect claims efficiently and effectively is a challenging task. Our experienced attorneys can assist clients in evaluating options for resolution, including out-of-court negotiations, mediation, and construction arbitration or litigation.
Depending on the facts and circumstances surrounding a case, construction defects may involve various causes of action and disputes, including:
- Breach of contract
- Breach of Warranty (express or implied warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose)
- Negligence & negligent misrepresentation
- Fraud and fraud inducement
- Indemnity and contribution
- Quantum meruit (unjust enrichment)
- Insurance coverage disputes
- Mechanic’s liens
Just as each contract contains its unique rights and obligations, each theory of liability has its distinct elements, defenses, and legal remedies. Contractual claims, for example, are common in construction dispute cases, and require Plaintiffs to prove a breach of provisions in a contract.
They may also permit a prevailing party to seek damages for loss of use, diminution in value, punitive damages, costs of repair and extra expenses incurred while defects are corrected, as well as specific performance, injunction, attorneys’ fees and other equitable remedies.
Whether you need to win a breach of contract claim or defend against arbitration and litigation or deceptive trade practices claims, Hendershot Cowart, P.C. has the breadth of experience and professional resources to protect your rights and help you make informed decisions given your available options. This includes evaluating your dispute to not only identify viable claims and counter-claims, but also the most appropriate forum for resolution.
Trust Proven Texas Trial Lawyers. Call (713) 909-7323
Hendershot Cowart, P.C. has cultivated a reputation for our work handling complex and high-stakes claims, including those arising from construction defects, construction delays, and disputes involving the coronavirus pandemic.
If you would like to discuss your matter and how our firm can help, call or contact us online to request a consultation.