1-888-800-1042
Kaman Cusimano Logo

Condo | HOA Lawyers

Investigate for Hidden Defects at Turnover or Pay the Price

Summary

A single warranty date applies to each condominium building in a development.  Meaning that each unit does not have its own warranty date, and units in different buildings will likely have different warranty dates, unless they happen to be completed on the same date

The Facts

Village Lofts Condominium Association consisted of two buildings: A and B.  Building A was substantially completed in 2003 and Building B was substantially completed in November of 2004.  In 2014 the Association discovered various water leaks in Building A.  In June of 2015 they had also found similar leaks in Building B.  The Association repaired the leaks throughout both buildings.  In August 2015 the Association sued the developers and contractors for breach of warranty, breach of contract and negligence.  The defendants brought motions for summary judgment arguing that that the Association couldn’t bring a suit after 10 years based on the statute of repose (similar to a statute of limitations).

Trial Court

The district court agreed with the defendants and granted summary judgment.

Supreme Court

As part of an in-depth analysis, the Supreme Court of Minnesota affirmed the district court.  Quoting a prior decision, the court held that “statutes of repose are ‘intended to eliminate a cause of action’ after a period of time… a point in time arrives beyond which a potential defendant should be immune from liability for past conduct.”

Lessons Learned
  1. Don’t wait until problems arise to investigate for hidden defects – hire an engineer at turnover; and
  2. If defects are found, hire a law firm that has won condominium defect cases previously.

Village Lofts at St. Anthony Falls Association v. Housing Partners III-Lofts, LLC, 937 N.W.2d 430 (2020) (Minn).

Categories

Three bars icon gold

Recent blog Posts

Three bars icon gold

Partner Nicholas Meinert Presents at Northern Ohio CAI Chapter on the Corporate Transparency Act

On June 14, 2024, Partner Nicholas Meinert presented to the Northern Ohio Chapter of the ...
Read More →

Partners Dan Miske and Lydia Chartre presented at Wisconsin’s Chapter of CAI on reserves and lending

On May 23, 2024, Partners Dan Miske and Lydia Chartre presented a webinar for the ...
Read More →

Strengthening Community Associations: The Vital Role of a Comprehensive Assessment Recovery Policy and Procedure

Community associations are founded on principles of shared responsibility and collective maintenance. From maintaining common ...
Read More →

Partner Nick Meinert presented at OLCA’s Spring Conference

Partner Nicholas Meinert gave a presentation at the 2024 Ohio Lake Communities Association’s Spring Conference. ...
Read More →