Architect, Engineer, and Design Professional Malpractice

Design Professional MalpracticeLos Angeles litigators Mark Anchor Albert and Associates also handle professional negligence and misconduct claims involving architects, engineers, and other skilled design professionals. These professionals, like attorneys and accountants, also are subject to professional standards of conduct, rules of practice, and other minimum levels of competence recognized and practiced by other professionals in their community that together comprise the applicable standard of care. Simply put, an architect, engineer, or other skilled design professional must exercise ordinary skill, reasonable care, and due diligence in providing professional services to their clients. The design and engineering work associated with a construction project is essential to the security and stability of the completed structure. Accordingly, to overlook the importance of such work, or to fail to devote the attention and care necessary to ensure that it is executed properly, is to expose the project to a risk of significant disruptions, delays and losses. A project that is poorly designed, or that does not adequately account for the relevant mechanical, structural, electrical, and geographical needs, is prone to failure and the risk of harm and damage to owners, lenders, workers, and others involved with the project, both during and after construction is completed.

Architects in particular perform professional services which require the skills of an architect in the planning of sites, and the design, in whole or in part, of buildings, or groups of buildings and structures. Professional architectural services may include any or all of the following: (1) pre-construction and pre-design investigation, evaluation, consultation, and advice; (2) planning, schematic, and preliminary studies, designs, working drawings, and specifications; (3) coordination of the work of technical and special consultants; (4) compliance with generally applicable codes and regulations, and assistance in the governmental review process; (5) technical assistance in the preparation of bid documents and agreements between clients and contractors; (6) contract administration; and (7) construction observation.

Errors and omissions by an architect with respect to professional architectural services can occur in a project’s schematic phase, the design development phase, the construction documents phase, and the construction supervision and completion phase. Engineering malpractice also often occurs in the design phase, whether with respect to conceptual engineering, preliminary engineering, and detailed engineering design functions.

Common examples of negligent practice often involve:

  • Errors in blue prints, architectural and engineering plans, and other construction or planning documents that have resulted from inadequate research or a lack of proper checking procedures;

  • Assignment of unqualified personnel;

  • Improper supervision of personnel;

  • Disregard of the client's program or instructions;

  • Failure to check compliance with applicable codes, statutes, and regulations;

  • Failure to retain appropriate consultants when needed;

  • Failure to provide adequate plans on time; and

  • Failure to satisfy the terms and conditions of the applicable engagement agreement.

Examples of some of the significant architecture, engineering, and design professional negligence, breach of contract, breach of warranty, and intentional misconduct claims handled by Los Angeles trial attorneys now with Mark Anchor Albert and Associates include the following:

In re Church Renovation Architectural Malpractice Litigation

Represented Metropolitan Community Church in a lawsuit claiming professional negligence, breach of contract, and breach of fiduciary duties against its architect regarding faulty architectural and engineering plans with respect to the re-design and re-configuration of the Church. Obtained a favorable, confidential settlement of the client’s claims at arbitration.

In re Chateau Paliset Architect and Engineer Malpractice Litigation

Analyzed potential claims for architectural and engineering malpractice on behalf of the owner of a luxury condominium building relating to severe water damage to the building due to improper flashing and sealing. Obtained favorable settlement for the client from the insurance carriers for the defendants on the eve of trial.

In re American Richmond Homes Construction Defect Litigation

Analyzed and prepared indemnity and contribution claims against the architect, engineers, and other design professionals involved in the planning and construction of over 12,500 homes in Colorado that were built on expansive clay soils, resulting in lifting, cracking, and splitting of the foundation slabs. Obtained multi-million dollar settlement of all claims from applicable insurance carriers.

Mark Anchor Albert and Associates provide clear judgment and steady hands in cases involving professional negligence and misconduct claims involving architects, engineers, and other skilled design professionals.