Norman, Wood, Kendrick & Turner partners Kile Turner and Bains Fleming recently obtained judgment as a matter of law in favor of their client, a general contractor, in a construction defect trial. The case involved the construction of a hotel in Gardendale, Alabama that had numerous defects that required extensive repair that the plaintiff’s expert testified would easily exceed $1.2 million. The dismissal came even though both the defendant and the defendant’s expert testified that the defendant general contractor was ultimately responsibility for any defective construction.
The owner alleged that the general contractor was guilty of negligent construction and suppression related to the construction of the hotel. Specific allegations related to the installation of the exterior siding and the use of lightweight concrete in the construction of the floors on the second and third floors of the building.
After four days of trial, which included the testimony of five expert witnesses, the plaintiff rested its case. Turner and Fleming argued that the general contractor was entitled to judgment as a matter of law based on the plaintiff’s failure to establish sufficient proof of damages. After hearing more than two hours of oral argument and consideration of briefs, the Court granted judgment as a matter of law in favor of the general contractor. Upon this ruling, the Court dismissed all of the plaintiff’s claims.
Interestingly, this case had been ongoing since 2008. Turner and Fleming were successful early in this litigation when they obtained summary judgment on four of the plaintiff’s six causes of action, which was appealed on two separate occasions.