Defects During Turnover

Identifying And Pursuing Defect Claims During Turnover
The turnover process — that is, the transition from developer to owner control — is a major step in the life of every community association. It’s a critical opportunity to address construction defects arising from the period of developer control. And, in fact, community associations have a legal obligation to conduct a thorough inspection and raise any defect claims on the owners’ behalf.

Missteps or oversights during turnover can result in significant losses, both in terms of finances and legal rights. Every community association should have a trusted attorney to assist with the inspection process and any defect claims that arise.

Why Partner With Us?
At Tannenbaum Scro, we bring to the table 30-plus years of experience handling construction defect claims on behalf of HOAs and COAs. Our attorneys excel at identifying claims and ensuring that important details don’t get overlooked. As experienced trial lawyers, we are well-prepared to represent owners in court should the need arise. We are also skilled at favorably resolving claims through negotiation, mediation, and arbitration.

We excel at developing creative, efficient and effective strategies for resolving disputes with developers, builders, and other responsible parties — all while safeguarding the association’s bottom line.

Why You Shouldn’t Rely On A “One-Stop Shop”
Construction defects are complex, both in the legal and technical sense. Identifying and pursuing turnover claims is a particularly niche area that requires in-depth knowledge and extensive experience. While many attorneys offer guidance as general counsel for board operations, they may not have that same level of experience and knowledge when it comes to spotting construction defects and navigating Florida’s unique process for resolving these claims.

We routinely partner with general counsel on these matters. Because our legal team includes Florida board-certified specialists in construction and real estate law, we know exactly what to look for at all stages of the transition process. We also have the industry connections to help associations hire the right trusted experts, such as engineers and architects, who often play a key role in inspections and defect claims.

A Well-Founded Reputation For Success
Our attorneys have helped associations and owners secure positive outcomes in high-stakes construction defect cases involving tens of millions of dollars. In fact, we have obtained one of the largest jury awards ($3.35 million) for a plaintiff condominium association in a construction defects matter.

With this level of proven experience on your side, you can rest assured that your community’s rights are in capable hands.

The First Critical Step For Identifying Turnover Claims
Construction defect claims that arise during turnover typically involve the quality of construction/workmanship or the materials themselves. A detailed inspection is necessary for uncovering these issues. Our lawyer can help your board enlist the appropriate experts and make sure that they pursue the right lines of inquiry.

Should issues arise, we can handle all aspects of the claims process, including:

  • Identifying the responsible parties: Depending on the nature of the issue, multiple parties may be involved, from the developer to the designer to various contractors and subcontractors.
  • Filing presuit notices and conducting presuit inspections: Florida law requires these steps as a prerequisite for pursuing construction defect claims in court. Although you may wish to resolve claims without the hassle and expense of litigation, it’s important to follow these procedures in the event that negotiations fail. Additionally, following through on these procedures sends a strong message to developers (and other opposing parties) that you are serious.
  • Evaluating proposals for resolution and engaging in strategic settlement negotiations: Typically, proposals involve repairs, cash or both. Our lawyers have the industry knowledge and experience to realistically evaluate these proposals (in conjunction with the association’s experts). We can use the proposals as a springboard to advocate for a favorable settlement.
  • Making a strong case in arbitration or litigation: Should negotiations fail, we are always prepared to take claims to court. Our lawyers are also experienced in arbitration.

Whatever the cause, resolving the conflict in these cases may require a variety of approaches. We will work directly with you to understand all relevant facts and help you resolve the issue in the most efficient and economical way. No matter what turn your case takes, you can trust that your rights are in good hands.

Discuss Your Case
Get in touch with our legal team at 941-444-9092 (toll-free 866-615-4543). You can also request a consultation online. Based in Sarasota, we also have offices in St. Petersburg, Orlando, and Fort Myers, and we represent associations across central and southwest Florida.