Wax NJ-2, LLC v. JFB Constr. & Dev., 13-cv-4537, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 74508 (S.D.N.Y. June 9, 2015)

Wax NJ-2, LLC (“Wax”) hired the architectural firm GF55 Partners (“GF55”) to design and then inspect construction of a store that Wax planned to open in New York City.  The building which Wax was preparing to lease for the store had been leased as two separate commercial spaces.  Wax had the option of moving a partition wall between the two spaces and thus increasing or decreasing the amount of square footage leased for its store.  In designing the layout of Wax’s store, GF55 reported to Wax that the footprint called for 1235 square feet.  Wax then entered into a lease agreement with the owner for 1235 square feet of the building at $125 per square foot.  Construction commenced, and GF55’s remaining obligations under its contract with Wax included inspection of the contractor’s work to ensure compliance with the building code.

Continue Reading Federal Court in New York Applies Scope of Duty Analysis in Deciding Claim for Architectural Malpractice

Hill International, Inc. v. Atlantic City Board of Education, 2014 N.J. Super. LEXIS 177 (App. Div. Dec. 30, 2014)

The Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division held that, in order to support of claim of professional malpractice or professional negligence, New Jersey’s Affidavit of Merit Statute, NJSA 2A:53A-26 to -29, requires that the affidavit of merit must be signed by an affiant who is licensed within the same profession as the defendant.

Continue Reading New Jersey Appellate Division Holds that Affidavit of Merit Must be Issued by a Professional within the Same Profession as Defendant

Bedwell Co. v. Camden County Improvement Auth., 2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95510 (D.N.J. July 14, 2014)

The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey contracted HDR Architects and Engineers, P.C. (“HDR”) to design a medical school building. After the project went to bid, the Bedwell Company (“Bedwell”) contracted with the owner’s development and contracting agent for the performance of foundation, structural steel, and other construction work.

Bedwell and HDR did not have a contract with each other. According to the allegations in Bedwell’s complaint, however, HDR was aware that the design documents that it prepared under its contract with the owner would be used by contractors like Bedwell in their estimation of costs and time for completion of the work. In its complaint, Bedwell alleged that defects in HDR’s design documents—which led to 212 Requests for Information and 469 Change Order Requests—caused unexpected costs and numerous delays.

Continue Reading Federal District Court in New Jersey Holds that Economic Loss Rule Does Not Bar Contractor’s Tort Claims Against Architect Where Parties Were Not in Privity of Contract