Extensive Negotiations Lead to Complete Dismissal of the Firm’s Subcontractor Client in Construction Defect Lawsuit

March 2012

Overview

Michael Eisenbaum of Gray•Duffy’s Encino office successfully negotiated for a dismissal of the firm’s client, Camozzi Excavation, Inc. in a construction defect action filed by homeowners in Santa Barbara.

Discussion

Bradley K. Joseph, M.D., et al. v. 926 Olive Street, et al.

The plaintiffs purchased a single-family home in 2001 from the defendant, 926 Olive Street, LLC.
Several years after purchasing the home, the plaintiffs experienced significant water intrusion problems, and filed suit against the developer and general contractor who then sued the firm’s grading subcontractor client, Camozzi Excavation, Inc. (“Camozzi”). As discovery progressed, it became evident that the grading issues were a result of alterations made by landscapers or others employed by the plaintiffs.

After extensive discussions with the plaintiffs’ attorneys and developers, Mr. Eisenbaum convinced the plaintiffs to drop all drainage claims related to grading, resulting in a dismissal of the developer’s cross-complaint against Camozzi. However, during these negotiations, the plaintiffs reached a settlement with the developer, who then attempted to renege on the agreement for a dismissal, and demanded that Camozzi contribute money to their settlement. Additional negotiations occurred and after remaining firm on the demand for a dismissal, the developer’s counsel finally agreed and dismissed Camozzi in exchange for a waiver of costs.

Please Note: This article is necessarily general in nature and is not a substitute for legal advice with respect to any particular case. Readers should consult with an attorney before taking any action affecting their interests.