Why Should A Contractor Participate In The FLA. STAT. CH.558 Process
In representing various contractors, we are consistently asked why a contractor should participate in the voluntary pre-suit process set forth under Florida Statutes Chapter 558. Florida Statutes Chapter 558 sets forth certain pre-requisites that a claimant must comply with prior to filing a lawsuit alleging construction defects. This process provides an opportunity for a contractor, as well as its expert/consultants and subcontractors/suppliers, to inspect the alleged defects and obtain discovery from the claimant prior to the initiation of a lawsuit. The process is designed to provide the parties with an opportunity to hopefully resolve the alleged construction defects prior to the initiation of litigation and the parties incurring significant fees and expenses. As construction defect litigation can be heavily time consuming and costly (it often includes retention of an expert(s)), participating in this process can be very beneficial and educational to a contractor and can, at times, lead to an early resolution of the dispute. As such, except under rare circumstances, a contractor should seriously consider participating in this voluntary process.
Michael Traficante is a shareholder of Grant Fridkin Pearson, P.A. He has practiced law in Southwest Florida since 2006 and has an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell. Michael’s practice is concentrated in complex commercial and civil litigation involving real property, business, construction, wills/trusts, and commercial issues.