Latent Defect Essay

1372 Words6 Pages
Mike Christensen
December 10, 2009
CM 385: Section 1
Final Paper
How Can A Contractor Avoid Liability for Defective Work?
Every contract created produces a margin of risk and a platform for success. Depending on how one manages the risk assumed, one may either excel and shine in the glory of success or drown and disappear in the raging waters of error. Nevertheless, to become great one must take that step of faith into the flailing wind. As said by Leo F. Buscalglia, “The person who risks nothing – does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn… and grow… and live.” (Buscalglia, 2009) The contractor who is bound to the owner must understand the risk
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Binghamton Housing Authority. It was six years after the completion of the Saratoga Terrace apartment complex when a child fell off the back porch stoop and received severe injuries. The parents of the child claimed that the contractor and owner were responsible due to their negligence in constructing the stoop without a protective railing. The court referenced back to the Campo v. Schofield case, which states, “We have not yet reached the state where a manufacturer is under the duty of making a machine accident proof or foolproof.” The court also noted that the complex had been used without accident for six years and that it did not conceal any dangers or defective work that would not have been found by a reasonable inspection. The outcome of the case proved that the pleading did not contain any allegation of a defect, and that the liability rested upon the parents of the child.
Consequently, the phrase Caveat Emptor (Buyer Beware) protects the contractor from future claims as long as the defective work existed at the time of inspection and could have reasonably been identified. Nevertheless, a contractor must also understand that if the defective work is classified as a latent defect, the risk and liability associated with this defect may be transferred back to the contractor.
Therefore, a contractor must understand what a latent
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