Category Archives: Recommended Reading

CAI Law Reporter – September 2007

While this case involved a roof, it could easily be a deck over a living space…read on, I wrote in DECK in exchange for Roof…

Business Judgment Rule is not Defense in Breach of Contract Claim

Anderson v. Nottingham Village Homeowner’s Association, Inc., 37 A.D. 3d 1195, 830 N.Y.S.2d 882 (2007)

Powers of the Association: The business judgment rule neither constitutes a defense to a breach of contract claim nor protects an association from liability where an association is contractually obligated to maintain property, even though individual unit owners are responsible for interior damage.

Mary Ann Anderson and her mother owned a townhouse in a cooperative managed by Nottingham Village Homeowners’ Association (“association”). A leak in the DECK roof above the Andersons’ townhouse caused mold growth in the interior of their townhouse, which caused damage to the property and health problems for the Andersons. Mary Anderson sued the association for its failure to repair the unit’s DECK properly. The association’s Maintenance Responsibility Policy placed responsibility for DECK maintenance on the association but also provided that individual unit owners would be responsible for interior water damage.

After Mary Anderson asked the court to add her mother as an additional plaintiff and seek damages for property damage and health problems arising from mold growth in the apartment, the association moved for summary judgment, arguing that the business judgment rule insulated the association from liability for failure to repair the DECK properly. The trial court denied Anderson’s motion and granted the association’s cross motion. Anderson appealed.

The business judgment rule bars judicial review of the reasonableness of decisions made by the managing board of condominiums or co-ops if the board acts within its authority, its action has a legitimate relationship with the purposes of the association, and there is no showing of bad faith, self-dealing, fraud, or other misconduct. However, as in this case, where the issue was breach of contract, the court determined that the business judgment rule did not apply and did not protect the association from liability for its alleged breach of contract.

The court affirmed that Anderson had contractually assumed responsibility for interior water damage resulting from a leaky DECK but concluded that the trial court abused its discretion in denying Anderson’s motion and her mother as an additional plaintiff. Stating that leave to amend a pleading should be freely granted if the amendment was not lacking in merit and there was no prejudice to the nonmoving party, the court ruled that the proposed amended complaint sufficiently alleged the breach of a duty of reasonable care independent of the association’s contractual duties and resulting non-economic damages to set forth a separate tort claim.

However, the court denied Anderson’s motion to recover punitive damages because the association’s conduct did not rise to the level of a high degree of moral culpability manifesting a conscious disregard of others’ rights or constituting willful or wanton negligence or recklessness.


TCNA – TCA Publications

If you waterproof decks for tile applications, you’d better have this in your library! Buy it today from Tile Council of America! No, sorry, we don’t get any referral fees or commissions. We bought this book and simply suggest you do to!

TCNA – TCA Publications: “The 2007 version of the TCA Handbook for Ceramic Tile Installation provides specification writers, architects, contractors and installers industry-consensus detailed drawings and installation specification guidelines for 101 installation methods. The specification guidelines for each method include recommended uses, limitations, requirements, materials, preparation by other trades, movement joints and installation specifications. It references American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) test methods. The 2007 Handbook features: + More than 300 updates + Significant changes in deflection language + All changes are marked with an ’07’ graphic + Includes Floor Covering Cost Comparison”

SB-800 & Decks has been published in Residental Contractor Magazine

Our article, SB-800 & Decks has been just published in the Summer Issue of Residential Contractor Magazine, a nationally distributed trade journal geared towards small and medium sized building contractors!

The article has been edited a bit from it’s original length to reflect the audience reading the magazine-honing in on what builders and contractors need to be aware of in the deck waterproofing world.

While written for the California market, the basis for the article discusses the warranty’s written by a manufacturer or installer, which except for state specific warranty laws, will generally apply in every state.

Free subscritions to Residential Contractor magazine can be had by following their links on their website-we recommend that you take advantage of a free subscription today.

Follow the link provided to read the article and start your free subscription.