On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Design Professionals on Mar 28, 2016.
In a recent decision, the Pennsylvania Superior Court clarified the legal requirements for a contractor’s direct claim for economic losses against a design professional caused by defective design. In Gongloff Contracting v L. Robert Kimball & Associates, a sub-subcontractor steel erector brought an action directly against a public project design professional (Kimball) for “misrepresentations” in the design documents. Gongloff claimed that the architect/engineer’s structural design was inadequate in that the steel roof structure and trusses could not safely sustain all required construction loads. As a consequence of those deficiencies, project shutdowns ensued, and multiple change orders were issued resulting in substantial additional cost to Gongloff. When the steel subcontractor and general contractor refused to pay those additional costs, Gongloff commenced an action against the design professional.