Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. was retained by the board of managers of a new construction condominium in Upper Manhattan to assist in getting the sponsor to fulfill its obligations pursuant to the condominium offering plan.

The building had recently turned over to resident control after the sponsor had majority control of the board of managers for several years. During this time, the sponsor-controlled board neglected a number of necessary repairs including, but not limited to, sprinkler system issues.

In particular, the sprinkler system pipes were not adequately insulated, which caused them to freeze and explode in common areas of the building on multiple occasions. The resulting damage in each instance was tremendous. Additional issues included, among other things, improper air balancing throughout the building and improperly installed windows and balcony doors.

Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. jumped into action to assist the board in getting their building fixed using a protocol that Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. has successfully implemented on myriad buildings.

The first step was to engage an engineer on behalf of the client to conduct a top-to-bottom building investigation. The purpose of having Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. retain the engineer instead of the client is to preserve the confidentiality of the findings.

Once the engineer was retained, Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. assisted the client in arranging access for the engineer throughout the building and individual units that were experiencing issues.

Next, the engineer prepared a comprehensive forensic report detailing each of the issues, ranging from more severe (life safety issues) to less severe (cosmetic issues). Adam Leitman Bailey, P.C. then reviewed the report and worked with the engineer to make it as persuasive as possible, before sending it along with a Notice of Claim letter to the building’s sponsor/developer.

From that point, given our firm’s reputation, the sponsor is often quick to commence repairing the building. In this case, with the board’s engineer overseeing the repairs, the sponsor fixed all the issues identified in the engineering report within a matter of months. This is a tremendous win in this type of case, which typically can drag on for many months if not years. Not to mention that we saved our client hundreds of thousands of dollars in repairs that it would have otherwise had to take on itself.

Had the sponsor not taken on the repairs after receiving the engineering report, we would have engaged in settlement meetings with the parties, engineers, and attorneys for both sides present. This is often a step we take in settling construction defect cases, as it enables the parties and, more importantly, their respective engineers, the opportunity to sit down and discuss the defects and agree on the next steps for each (i.e., additional probes, testing, and/or sponsor’s agreement to fix by a date certain).

Rachel Sigmund McGinley and Adam Leitman Bailey represented the condo board in this matter.