Colorado Construction Litigation

Latest from Colorado Construction Litigation

Last April, the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado decided in an action for declaratory relief that the Colorado Construction Defect Action Reform Act (“CDARA”) does not afford insurers the right to separate notice, beyond that of the claimant to the construction professional, of their duty to defend the insured. This case, Auto-Owners Insurance Company v. High Country Coatings, Inc., involves a dispute between a construction professional, High Country Coatings (hereinafter “HCC”), and…
Higgins, Hopkins, McLain & Roswell is pleased to announce that Ben Volpe has joined the firm as an Associate. He is a graduate of the Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law, graduating cum laude. Mr. Volpe has experience working as a federal contractor supporting the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Mr. Volpe also served as a sworn university police officer at his graduate school, George Washington…
The attorneys and staff at Higgins, Hopkins, McLain & Roswell are proud to announce that Law Week Colorado named Founding Member Dave McLain as the 2019 People’s Choice for Best Construction Defects Lawyer for Defendants.  According to the publication: Law Week Colorado asked its readership to weigh in on the best attorneys in just about every practice area we could think of.  We received hundreds of responses and sifted through the votes for each category…
While Nunn-Agreements[1] may be appealing for both plaintiffs and defendants where an insurer unreasonably fails to defend a lawsuit, a recent opinion from The Honorable Marcia Krieger in the United States District Court of Colorado[2] (“Opinion”) demonstrates the importance of first confirming that there exists a viable insurance claim before proceeding with such a Nunn- Agreement. The facts giving rise to the Opinion were as follows. In March 2015, a Homeowner couple (the…
The Colorado Court of Appeals held that an insurance company, which issues a reservation of rights letter to its insured, loses its interest in the litigation, pursuant to C.R.C.P. 24(a)(2), when the insured settles the claims and assigns the bad faith action against the insurance company to the plaintiff.  Bolt Factory Lofts Owners Association, Inc. v. Auto-Owners Insurance Company, 2019WL 3483901(Colo. App. 2019). In a 2016 lawsuit in Denver District Court, 2016CV3360, the Bolt Factory…
In 2010, Hansen Construction was sued for construction defects and was defended by three separate insurance carriers pursuant to various primary CGL insurance policies.[i]  One of Hansen’s primary carriers, Maxum Indemnity Company, issued two primary policies, one from 2006-2007 and one from 2007-2008.  Everest National Insurance Company issued a single excess liability policy for the 2007-2008 policy year, and which was to drop down and provide additional coverage should the 2007-2008 Maxum policy…
By David M. McLain My advice to home builders has long been to arbitrate construction defect claims instead of litigating them in front of juries.  Based on my experience and watching others litigate claims, I have learned that home builders usually fare better in arbitration than in jury trials, both in terms of what they have to pay the homeowners or HOAs and also in what they recover from subcontractors and design professionals.  Because of…
Division V of the Colorado Court of Appeals addressed, for the first time, corporate veil-piercing in the context of a single-member, single-purpose LLC that is managed under a contract by another company.  On July 3, 2019, the Court of Appeals reversed the order of the Honorable Ross B. Buchannan, Denver District Court Judge (17CA2102), who held that Plaintiff/Appellee Christopher Hinds satisfied the elements required to pierce the corporate veil of Sedgwick Properties Development Corporation (“Sedgwick”). …
By Jean Meyer On May 30, 2019, Judge Richard Brooke Jackson of the United States District Court for the District of Colorado offered an insightful lesson to the parties in Auto-Owners Insurance Co. v. Bolt Factory Lofts Owners Association, Inc.[1] on the importance of ripeness in declaratory judgment insurance actions and bad faith counterclaims. The case arrived in front of Judge Jackson based on the following fact pattern. A homeowner association (Bolt Factory Lofts…