An architect is an incredibly important person in the world of construction. The role they play starts before ground is broken and doesn’t end until after the job is completed. As a result, they often end up being the focus of disputes between the business owner, construction manager, and subcontractors.
The architect coordinates both the aesthetic and practical needs of the building. This must meet engineering, construction management, and local authority criteria.
If an architect is negligent in their duties, it can result in design flaws that have an impact on the building’s structural integrity. These design flaws can include defects in the roof, foundation, and structure. This can result in cost overruns, contract disputes, and designs that do not meet safety regulations. Any one of these issues can result in a disruption of business.
The Cedar Rapids architect and design law attorneys of Arenson Law Group, PC recognize the stress and pressure business owners are under when they try to resolve issues that an architect caused. Our legal team is prepared to help you pursue the funds needed to finish the construction properly. Call our office today for a confidential consultation at (319) 363-8199. You can also chat with us online or fill out our online contact form.
What Is Disruption of Business?
If an architect was negligent in the design or execution of the design plans, it might result in the interruption of business for the business owner. In other words, business owners estimate their income based on the completion of their construction project. If that completion date is held up because of a design flaw or a problem with the building, it results in an interruption of business and loss of income.
Business owners can purchase their own business interruption insurance. This can help pay the extra expenses when income is lost from an unexpected interruption in business. However, when that interruption is the result of an architect’s negligence, it is the architect who is responsible and liable for the financial loss.
A business owner might be able to use their business interruption insurance if there were a natural disaster. This includes a lightning strike or windstorm, or if a fire forces the business to shut down. Business interruption insurance helps cover the income that is lost from the time the business is closed.
This allows employees to be paid and helps cover other expenses. It also provides a business owner with funds to make payments for utility bills and other expenses that don’t stop when the business is closed.
Why Do You Need a Lawyer?
An architect plays an important role in a construction job. When they make a mistake, it’s likely that serious accidents can happen. Along with a serious accident can come serious injuries. For this reason, architects must carry adequate insurance to cover potential mistakes that can create financial, physical, and emotional suffering.
After such an accident, business owners are often left unable to generate revenue from their construction project until everything is fixed. The only way to ensure your rights as a business owner are truly protected is to hire a lawyer who is a qualified architect and design law.
Your lawyer can review the details of your case and help develop a plan of action to resolve your case successfully. It is necessary to gather evidence to substantiate the architect’s liability and failure to fulfill their responsibilities. An architect may also be responsible for financial damages when construction is not completed on time. Incomplete construction also interrupts business income.
You need an attorney who is familiar with legal aspects of architect and design flaws, as well as someone who can represent your claim in court. The team at Arenson Law Group, PC are skilled negotiators and can negotiate with the architect’s insurance company to get you the maximum compensation. If the insurance company will not compensate you for what you’re owed, our team of aggressive litigators is prepared to represent your claim in court. If you have pressing questions about your case, contact us today.
Architect’s Key Responsibilities
Architects purchase insurance policies to cover the risks they face when mistakes happen. Among those policies are general liability costs, business owner policies, professional liability insurance, cyber liability, and workers’ comp insurance.
Architects work with other professionals such as civil engineers, HVAC engineers, interior designers, and landscape architects. They have responsibilities throughout the project, from the initial draft of the building to completion.
The architect supplies the documentation and drawings from which the construction crew works to complete the project. The architect is also involved in cost estimation and will perform site visits while the building is under construction. Integral to this is their knowledge of building codes, safety regulations, and city laws that affect the design and development of the building.
Each of these responsibilities has a significant impact on the potential that there may be defects in the construction, foundation, or cost overruns and construction delays, all of which can lead to disruption of your business.
Statute of Limitations in Iowa
If negotiations with the architect’s insurance company are not successful, you may want to file a lawsuit to recover damages. In the state of Iowa, these must be filed within a certain time period, which is called the statute of limitations.
When this timeframe is not followed, you may relinquish your right to file a suit in court for damages. Under the statute of repose, you may be able to extend the statute of limitations. However, this only applies to certain defects in construction. The statute of limitations starts on the date the defect resulted in property damage, injury, or death that causes the disruption of business.
- Injury to a person – If the defective structure caused bodily harm, you would have two years to file your lawsuit from the date of the incident.
- Injury to property – If property damage occurred from a building defect, you would have five years from the date of the damage to pursue legal action.
- Breach of contract – You have ten years to file a lawsuit if your losses result from a breach of a written contract
- Fraud – There’s a five-year statute of limitations for cases involving fraud.
Contact Arenson Law Group, PC Today for Help with Your Business Interruption Dispute
If your business income was affected by an architect’s negligence, you might be entitled to compensation to cover your financial losses. The experienced architect and design law attorneys of Arenson Law Group, PC can help you recover damages. We are based in Iowa, but we can also practice in Wisconsin or Minnesota. Call our team today at (319) 363-8199, or reach out to us online to schedule your confidential consultation to discuss your case.
Written by James H. ArensonLast Updated : October 13, 2023