Picadio Sneath Miller & Norton, P.C.

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Effective January 1, 2018 Picadio Sneath Miller & Norton, P.C. has merged into, and will now practice law as Houston Harbaugh, P.C. Visit Houston Harbaugh here and learn more about all the ways we can serve you.

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Construction Archives

Superior Court Further Extends Reach of Negligent Misrepresentation Claims in Pennsylvania

Approximately two years ago, I commented on the Superior Court opinion in Gongloff Contracting, L.L.C. v. L. Robert Kimball & Assoc., No. 785 WDA 2014 (Pa. Super. 2015), which expanded the reach of Pennsylvania's negligent misrepresentation law from applying only to claims by contractors against design professionals to also encompassing claims by subcontractors against design professionals.  Recently, the Superior Court has further expanded this cause of action beyond claims against only design professionals.  In Fulton Bank, N.A. v. Sandquist, No. 2306 EDA 2016 (Pa. Super. 2017), the Superior Court has now recognized a cause of action for potential liability against accountants and their firms under a theory of negligent misrepresentation for providing professional information that is designed to be relied upon by a third party.

When Does an Agreement to Repurchase Construction Material Equal a Contract for Services?

Recently, in the case of CPG Int'l LLC v. Shelter Products, Inc., No. 3:15cv1045 (M.D. Pa. 2017) the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania denied a motion for partial summary judgment on the grounds that the claim at issue was not barred by the statute of frauds, which applies to contracts for the sale of goods, because the purchaser actually agreed to provide a service to the seller in repurchasing inventory and relocating it to another distributor.

What Is the Pennsylvania One Call System?

backhoe-413903_640.jpgApril is National Safe Digging Month, reminding all contractors and homeowners to call 811 at least three business days before starting a digging project to ensure that all underground utility lines are properly marked and precautions are taken to ensure safety and damage prevention. Whether you are in Pennsylvania or another state, 811 is the nationally recognized number for reporting your planned digging project. According to Pennsylvania 811, "every six minutes an underground utility line is damaged because someone decided to dig without first dialing 8-1-1." Hitting a single utility line can cause severe bodily injury as well as repair costs and power outages. So whether you're planning to simply install a new fence or you're about to begin a major public construction project, Call Before You Dig!

A Quick Look into the Statutory Employer Defense

Reiner, Amber 143 .jpgIn a recent case filed in the US District Court for the Middle District of PA, a general contractor and subcontractor agreed to pay $1.2 million to settle claims after a worker fell at a construction site. In short, the plaintiff fell while walking across a 17 foot high wall on a construction site on the Misericordia University campus in Luzerne County, suffering serious injuries to his ankles and feet.

"Litigation is the New Game of Kings"

Owen-J-Mcgrann-profile.jpgThe Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania recently issued an important opinion in the municipal construction field: F. Zacherl, Inc. v. Flaherty Mech. Contrs., LLC, 2016 Pa. Commw. LEXIS 22 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2016). Zacherl is a trip down the rabbit hole of construction litigation on public projects.

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