February 2013 Archives

FRIDAY FAVORITES - VALENTINE'S DAY EDITION

Posted
By Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

Ah, Paris - arguably the most romantic place in the world (although my vote would be for MetLife Stadium). In a recent twist on Parisian public displays of affection, locals and tourists alike have taken to affixing locks to some of the city's bridges and throwing the keys into the Seine. While city leaders debate whether the "lovelocks" are graffiti or a boon to tourism, one thing is absolutely certain - they represent a lot of dead load (or would they be considered live load?) that was never factored into the bridge design. Let's hope these bridges don't collapse under the weight of all that love.


The smell of love is in the air - or is it raw sewage? Take your special someone on this Valentine's Day tour and they're one and the same. Just remember the hand sanitizer. And, if anyone actually proposes during the tour, please upload it to YouTube!


Finally, for all you cynics out there, here's a story that has absolutely nothing to do with love. Leave it to the hometown of Microsoft (and grunge music) to build a bridge that has record-setting brawn and a whole lot of electronic brains. Seventeenth century physics will keep the world's largest floating bridge from sinking to the bottom of Lake Washington but its remote sensors and construction methods will sport a decidedly more modern feel. The new pontoons will be affixed with over 1,000 water sensors which will send a signal through a programmable logic controller to the 24 hour maintenance facility whenever water leaks are detected. Rebar will be protected from corrosion by low-voltage DC electricity. And, in a nod to security concerns, the bridge will be outfitted with multiple security cameras, intrusion detectors and sharks with laser beams attached to their backs will patrol the depths below - just kidding about that last one - or am I?

National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 - New Procurement Rules Coming

Posted
By

In January, President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 ("NDAA"), which includes numerous new procurement policies directed at contractors and how they bid on and perform government contracts.

To learn more about this, click here to read the client alert.

Trends in Single-Family Housing

Posted
By

To learn more about the ways investors and new market entrants are attempting to develop what is emerging as a new single-family asset class, the regulatory changes that have caused banks to retreat from participation in the mortgage servicing business, and compliance challenges for existing and new servicers, click here to read the client alert entitled Trends in Single-Family Housing written by Craig A. deRidder, Peter G. Freeman and Joseph T. Lynyak, III.

Prohibition on Contract Awards to Companies That Were Formerly Based in the United States

Posted
By

On January 29, 2013, a final rule was issued prohibiting the award of contracts to inverted domestic corporations. The final rule requires an offeror to represent that it is not an inverted domestic corporation and creates potential liability if the contractor's legal status changes after the contract is awarded.

To learn more about this, click here to read the client alert that was written by John Jensen and Evan Wesser.

Denying Coverage Based on the Insured's Lack of Cooperation - A Difficult Standard for Insurers to Meet

Posted
By

An insured's duty to cooperate with its insurer in the investigation and potential payment of claims is essential to the insurance relationship and is often a condition precedent to coverage. As the Supreme Court for the State of Washington recently affirmed, however, an insurer's ability to deny coverage based on lack of cooperation is limited. Staples v. Allstate Ins. Co., No. 86413-6 (Wash. Jan. 24. 2013). To do so, the insurer must demonstrate a substantial and material breach by the insured of the cooperation clause that results in actual prejudice to the insurer. In other words, where the insured has substantially complied with the cooperation clause or there has been no prejudice to the insurer, a denial of coverage for breach of cooperation will not stand.

CONTINUE READING

California Contractors State License Board Confirms Asbestos Certification Does Not Authorize Universal Removal/Abatement

Posted
By

Recently, the California Contractors State License Board (CLSB) issued an Industry Bulletin confirming that contractors may not perform abestos removal or abatement work if the work is not performed within the contractor's license classification(s). An asbestos abatement certification by itself is not a CSLB contractor's license classification. To obtain such a certification, the applicant is not required to have four years of experience, the minimum experience requirement for the CSLB to issue a contractor's license.

Contractors who want to become certified to perform asbestos removal and/or abatement must be tested by CSLB and also register with the Department of Industrial Relations' Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal OSHA). Once registered, the contractor must submit verification of the Cal OSHA registration to the CSLB. The CSLB will then add "ASB" on the license to indicate that asbestos removal/abatement can be performed within the contractor's license classification(s).

To read the CSLB's Industry Bulletin, click here, and to read the related legal opinion, click here.