If you are having something built by a contractor, you expect that everything will go according to the terms of the contract. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. There are times when something goes wrong and you need to make sure that the contractor either fixes what is wrong or refunds the money that you have spent.
There is a specific procedure that must be followed when it comes to construction defect claims and if you have any hope of getting what you deserve, you have no choice but to follow the steps in the order that is dictated.
What happens once I file a construction defect claim?
According to the law in Washington, for every construction defect claim that is filed, the person who is filing the claim must provide written notice to the contractor (or some other construction professional) within 45 days of discovering the defect. The claim must state what the defect is in writing and must describe the defect in general.
Once the construction professional receives the written notice, the construction professional must submit a written response to the person who has filed the claim by registered mail or deliver the response in person within 21 days after the notice of the claim was filed.
What is in the construction professional’s written response?
The written response must contain a proposal to inspect the structure that is referred to in the claim and the construction professional must complete the inspection within a specific amount of time. The proposal must have a statement that the construction professional is either offering to fix the defect, reimburse the person who filed the claim or dispute the claim. Also, the construction professional must also offer to compromise and settle the claim without inspecting the structure, if that is what the claimant wishes.
Another option for the construction professional to propose is that they buy the structure from the claimant and to pay the claimant fair relocation expenses. Another possible response from the construction professional is that they intend to dispute the claim and have no intention of fixing the defect or settling the claim.
Seeking legal advice from a Washington state construction attorney
If you are a construction professional and a person for whom you built a structure has filed a claim against you because of an alleged defect in the structure, you may not agree with the claim and may wish to fight it. In that case, the legal advice of a construction attorney may really help you to resolve your case.
This type of case may be difficult to navigate and there is no reason why you have to struggle with that. Your attorney can give you sound legal advice and can help you to protect your rights so that you can move on from a difficult situation without hurting your professional reputation.