The General Assembly, in its 2020 session, passed new legislation (codified at new Virginia Code §11.4-6 and in amended and reenacted Virginia Code § 40.1-29) that makes Virginia general contractors jointly and severally liable for its subcontractors’ employee wages if the general contractor knew or should have known that the subcontractor was not paying its employees. The new law goes into effect on July 1, 2020.
Before this year’s General Assembly Session we wrote about two companion bills that would create a statute of limitations on claims made by the Commonwealth of Virginia on construction and design contracts for state projects.
Yesterday, in a victory for the Virginia construction and design industries, the House of Delegates bill passed, on a bipartisan and unanimous basis, out of the House Courts of Justice Civil Subcommittee, over opposition voiced by the Virginia Department of General Services (DGS), the Governor’s Office, and VDOT.
The Virginia Department of General Services has issued its General Assembly-mandated report on current Virginia law regarding state construction contracts and the freedom that the Commonwealth currently enjoys from any statutory time limitation on the state’s ability to bring claims against its contractors.
We have previously written about the Hensel Phelps case here and here and the result in that case arising from the Commonwealth’s complete immunity on state jobs from the normal five-year contract statute of limitations (in Hensel Phelps, a state agency was allowed to bring suit against a general contractor fourteen years after substantial completion). A recent Supreme Court of Virginia case arising in a different context highlights the need for either: (1) the General Assembly to change this law allowing the Commonwealth to bring stale lawsuits; or (2) general contractors to ...
Our recent blog post explained the importance of indemnification provisions in construction contracts. A 2018 federal case has clarified just how carefully they must be drafted in order to have any meaning.
For background, section 11-4.1 of the Virginia Code is sometimes known as the “Anti-Indemnity Statute.” Under 11-4.1, any indemnification provision in a construction contract that obligates the contractor to indemnify another party to the contract for that other party’s negligence is unenforceable.
In the recent case, Travelers Indem. Co. v. Lessard Design, Inc.
A 2018 federal case shows just how costly a flow-down indemnification provision can be, and highlights just how carefully contracts should be read before signing.
A recent New Hampshire case shows that all indemnification provisions are not equal. Without careful drafting, a party may be required to indemnify another party even before any allegations of negligence are proven in court.
A recent Virginia Supreme Court opinion has highlighted the impact of private statutes of limitations in public contract disputes and again confirmed the need to ensure indemnification provisions are drafted to comply with Virginia law.
Sometimes referred to as “hold harmless” provisions, the indemnification section of a design or construction contract can have profound legal consequences. The concept of indemnification is not complicated—indemnification is an agreement to assume a specific liability, potential or actual, of another party in the event of a loss. It involves shifting risk from one party to another—essentially as insurance. When a contractor or design professional indemnifies a client, she or he assumes some or all of the client’s potential or actual legal liabilities, which may ...
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