Broken Buildings: Legal Rights and Remedies in the Wake of a Collapse

Sun sets over old ruined building

It is imperative that construction industry professionals be aware of the legal issues that are raised by such ill-fated events.

October 11, 2021
David J. Pfeffer - Construction Executive

A tragedy transpired on June 24 in Surfside, Florida, when the Champlain Towers South suddenly fell, becoming one of the country’s most deadly unintentional building collapses. It is imperative that construction industry professionals be aware of the legal issues that are raised by such ill-fated events.

Who Is Held Responsible?

Who can be held responsible for such disasters lies among several possible parties:

  • The building’s design professionals, particularly its architects and structural engineers. They are charged with ensuring that the building’s design is safe. They must take many factors into account, including, but not limited to, the materials that are used, the foundation, the weight and the height.
  • General contractors and the subcontractors. General contractors implement the design created by the architects and engineers and are responsible for appropriate materials. The general contractor also supervises the subcontractors aiding with multiple areas of the building’s construction and which also share the responsibility of executing the design and maintaining the building’s structural integrity.

Reprinted courtesy of David J. Pfeffer, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved.

Mr. Pfeffer may be contacted at dpfeffer@tarterkrinsky.com



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