Monthly Archives: March 2011

California Court of Appeal Puts the Brakes on Contractually Exculpating Liability for Gross Negligence

Riding motocross has been part of my life for nearly twenty years. Every weekend as a kid, I would wake my parents up early, load my motorcycle in the back of a truck, and we would drive to the local

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Elimination of the “Process of Elimination”? Fuh-get About It

Earlier this year, a fire investigator advised me that the 2011 edition of NFPA 921, Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations, would be coming out in February. He alerted me that the new edition was “doing away with the process

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Lasko Recalls 4.8 Million Box Fans

Today the Consumer Product Safety Commission announced a voluntary recall of 4.8 million Lasko box fans. The recall notice reports “an electrical failure in the fan’s motor poses a fire hazard to consumers.” The CPSC cites a “barn fire resulting

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Stumbling Over Michigan’s Distinction Between Contractual and Common Law Duties

Tort claims arising from construction defects often falter in the looming presence of a contract. The existence of a contract is particularly challenging for the plaintiff who is not in contractual privity with the defendant. Under Michigan law, the distinction

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Houses Can Still Make Cents: Illinois’ Implied Warranty of Habitability

Residential construction defects are common occurrences in Illinois where numerous homes and condominiums quickly went up before the housing bubble burst.  Illinois’ expansion of the economic loss doctrine has made alleging tort theories against builders and vendors (those that sell)

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Be Careful Not to Split the Cause of Action

Many states, including Pennsylvania, recognize that once a property insurer has paid its insured for a property damage loss, that insurer owns a separate and independent cause of action against the tortfeasor responsible for causing the damage. See State Farm

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