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General Engineering Contractor v. Local Public Agency (Riverside and Orange Counties)

The Firm began representing the prime contractor as project counsel concerning this unique cured-in-place pipe (CIPP) project.

The Firm helped position its client to declare owner default, stop work based on owner breaches of Public Contract Code section 1104 (lack of buildable plans), and avoid performance bond surety takeover, as well as mitigate risk with the client’s CIPP subcontractor, its surety, and liability insurers.  These tasks required a thorough understanding of the CIPP specifications, the CIPP industry players, and strong relationships with the sureties.

The project owner sought over $10 million from the Firm’s client and surety.

Post declaration of default, litigation commenced among the client, project owner, subcontractor, and sureties, with the project owner seeking more than $10 million from the Firm’s client and surety.  The Firm was able to shift defense costs to liability insurers and mitigate the out-of-pocket litigation costs to its client.  The project owner incurred over $1 million in attorneys’ fees.

The case settled for payment to the Firm’s client.

After two years of litigation, depositions of the key project participants and CIPP industry participants around the country, with a six-week jury trial looming, and following three mediation sessions over six months, the case settled for payment to the Firm’s client, hailed as an excellent result in this bet-the-company (and personal assets supporting the bonding line) case.

Counsel: P. Randolph Finch Jr., Nowell A. Lantz, and Andrea L. Petray

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