Experience: Expert Witness

A sampling of cases in which the services of Fred Nolta were retained.

Contract Disputes

A homeowner contracted with a general contractor (GC) to do major renovation to her residence. Two years after the start of construction the work was completed and the GC submitted a final invoice for over twice the original contract amount. No change orders or change proposals were submitted prior to final invoice. The homeowner disputed the extra costs. Task: Opinion of cost and contracted scope of work.

A public healthcare district contracted with a developer to provide a Medical Office Building (MOB) on its hospital campus. The developer expended years of effort and expense doing design development and permit acquisition (pre-construction). The Planning Department (conditions of use) permit was issued and the plans were submitted to the Building Department for plan check pending their final round of approval. The District became frustrated with the extended length of time pre-construction was taking and terminated the developer, offering no compensation for their effort. Developer claimed reimbursement of expenses and damages. Task: Opinion of cost, schedule and standard of care.

A property owner contracted with a GC to renovate their office building. Owner claimed defective workmanship and withheld payment. GC claimed the contract documents (plans) were in error and demanded payment. Task: Opinion of cost and standard of care.

A developer contracted with a GC to build a condo building. The initial foundation excavation revealed concealed conditions which generated additional costs. The projected revised contract price exceeded the developer’s loan. The developer could not fully pay the GC’s monthly progress payment applications. The GC stopped work, and demanded payment on past due invoices and evidence the developer could pay for the balance of the work. Task: Opinion of cost, schedule and standard of care.

Employment Law

An on-site superintendent (Sup) for a GC took objection to the quality of the work to replace aircraft runway expansion joints. The work was not per the specifications but was being presented and invoiced to the owner as per specifications. The Sup was told to stay in the office trailer and later his employment was terminated. The Sup claimed for wrongful termination and damages. Task: Opinion on standard of care.

The owner of an equipment controls company sold his business to another firm. The owner was required to continue managing the controls company as an employee of the acquiring firm. The acquiring firm failed to provide the required support and disrupted the company’s operations and profitability. The owner was subjected to high stress and long work hours, suffered a heart attack and became disabled. The owner claimed breach of contract, personal injury and damages. Task: Opinion of standard of care.

Personal Injury

A maintenance worker employed by a casino/hotel fell through a high suspended ceiling while performing repair work on the mechanical ventilation system. He suffered major injury and is severely disabled for life. The workman claimed damages against the design build contractor due to the mechanical system not being installed per building code requiring accessibility to perform service work. Task: Opinion of standard of care and construction defect.

A pre-cast concrete beam snapped in half while being hoisted into position during the construction of a bridge. As the failed beam fell it knocked a carpenter off a bridge pier. The carpenter suffered major injuries and claimed damages. The major dispute was which party had responsibility for the beam’s failure. Task: Opinion of standard of care.

A construction worker was killed working on a job site. He was run over by a forklift unloading a truck load of concrete block. The worker’s family claimed damages. Task: Opinion of standard of care.

A young man climbed a fence and slept under the cover of concrete formwork in a storage yard. During the night the form(s) fell and killed the man. The man’s family claimed damages against the property owner and owner of the forms. Task: Opinion of standard of care.

Construction Defect

A homeowner contracted with a window/door contractor for replacement of existing windows and sliding doors at their single family residence. Two previous contractors failed to provide replacement windows and sliding doors to the satisfaction of the owner. The sliding doors had a major chronic water intrusion issue. The adjacent wood floor system was found to have extensive rot requiring replacement. Homeowner claimed for cost of repairs against the contractor and the contractor’s state license bond. Other associated water intrusion issues were found compounding a settlement of the claim. Task: Opinion of construction defect, cost and standard of care.

An HOA had issues with interior doors not closing correctly throughout their 19 story building. The post tension concrete floor slabs were found to be deflecting beyond normal tolerances. The HOA claimed construction defect and damages against the developer, who then subrogated to the contractor controlled insurance program (CCIP) and structural engineer of record. Task: Opinion of construction defect and standard of care task.

A commercial high-rise property owner renovated its building acting as the owner-builder. The owner contracted with a concrete contractor to re-surface, stain and seal the concrete flatwork over the underground parking garage. Underground garage incurred a significant increase in water intrusion. Owner claimed defective workmanship and damages. Task: Opinion of construction defect and cost.

The auto fill valve for the firewater storage tank that serviced a multi tower high-rise building stayed stuck in the “on” position during the night, flooding the underground garage it was located in. Four inches of water accumulated in the lowest level of the city block size garage. The insurance company that provided coverage to the HOA claimed construction defect and damages against the developer’s owner controlled insurance program (OCIP). Task: Opinion of construction defect and cost.

A homeowner’s single family residence experienced settlement resulting in cracking and separating concrete. Homeowner claimed construction defect and damages against developer. Task: Opinion of construction defect and cost.

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All photos on this website are from Fred Nolta's experience performing a significant role in their construction or forensic analysis.