CA Supreme Court: Right to Repair Act (SB 800) is the Exclusive Remedy for Residential Construction Defect Claims – So Now What?

January 31, 2018
Steven M. Cvitanovic & Omar Parra - Publications & Insights

A torrent of alerts have been flooding e-mail inboxes regarding the California Supreme Court’s decision in McMillin v. Superior Court, to reverse the Liberty Mutual Insurance Company v. Brookfield Crystal Cove LLC (2013) case, but with little discussion about the practical effects of the ruling. This alert will discuss how this ruling affects litigation of SB 800 Claims and Builders.

Background on Liberty Mutual Case

In 2002, the California Legislature enacted comprehensive construction defect litigation reform referred to as the Right to Repair Act (the “Act”). Among other things, the Act establishes standards for residential dwellings, and creates a prelitigation process that allows builders an opportunity to cure the construction defects before being sued. Since its enactment, however, the Act’s application has been up for debate. Most notably, in Liberty Mutual Insurance Company v. Brookfield Crystal Cove LLC (2013), the California Court of Appeal for the Fourth District held the Act was the exclusive remedy only in instances where the defects caused only economic loss, and that homeowners could pursue other remedies in situations where the defects caused actual property damage or personal injuries.

Reprinted courtesy of Steve Cvitanovic, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP and Omar Parra, Haight Brown & Bonesteel LLP
Mr. Cvitanovic may be contacted at scvitanovic@hbblaw.com
Mr. Parra may be contacted at oparra@hbblaw.com



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