The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that 84 Lumber and a Maryland developer have settled their years-long legal dispute over subparly built homes and unpaid construction bills. According to a federal court judge, Pennsylvania-based 84 Lumber violated several of the agreements it had with developer Gregory Mortimer.
The judge determined that Maryland developer Gregory Mortimer’s obligation to pay 84 Lumber $600,000 that 84 Lumber claimed he owed was excused because 84 Lumber failed to uphold its end of the construction agreement.
Instead, the court ordered 84 Lumber to pay Mortimer $281,000 in damages and interest for a number of subpar housing units in Deep Creek, Maryland. , resort community.
Mortimer and 84 Lumber have been engaged in a legal dispute since the developer hired 84 Lumber to construct six townhouse-style buildings in 2008. Through a program the building supply company provided to ensure builders wouldn’t need to be present at job sites, Mortimer hired 84 Lumber. The materials and labor for the construction project would be handled by 84 Lumber.
The Post-Gazette reports that Mortimer was complaining about the work being done on the projects 84 Lumber was hired to complete a year after hiring them. Since the project was not finished by 2010, 84 Lumber sued Mortimer the following year for $600,000 in unpaid labor and supplies. Mortimer countersued, claiming that the caliber of 84 Lumber’s work destroyed his company.
The court discovered during the litigation that there was no 84 Lumber site superintendent regularly checking the caliber of the work done by the subcontractors.
According to the testimony of a professional engineer and an expert witness for Mortimer, the buildings at that location had “numerous issues and defects associated with the foundations, sheathing, siding, roofs, and framing constructed by 84 Lumber.”
The court rejected Mortimer’s claims for consequential damages for lost revenue and profit to his business. It’s unclear, according to the Post-Gazette, whether 84 Lumber intends to challenge the court’s ruling.
Mortimer wrote, “We went up against over a million in billed legal fees by 84,” in an email to ProSales magazine. I didn’t have those resources. So we strategically focused on the breach of contract. We will appeal for the consequential and tort damages now that we have won. ”.
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