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California Court Says Architects Owe Duty to Condo Buyers
Posted on May. 28, 2013

The California Court of Appeals has held that architects owe third party condominium unit purchasers a duty of care in the performance of professional services despite contractual language stating otherwise.  In Beacon Residential Community Association v. Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, 3211 Cal.App.4th 1301 (2012), the court relied on the state common law as well as a California statute in deciding that if a design professional performs its services negligently, it will be liable for damages to the ultimate purchasers of residential property. 

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Imagining Salt Lake City's Cultural Core
Posted on May. 16, 2013

What would happen if Salt Lake City hosted an international design competition meant to transform its cultural core?  The astounding answer is that over 200 teams of architects, designers, and students representing forty-eight countries have focused their creative talents and energies on two downtown blocks of Salt Lake City over the last four months.  SixtyNine Seventy, The Spaces Between: An Urban Ideas Competition invited design teams from around the world to envision the linked spaces and passages within blocks 69 and 70 (West Temple to State Street and 100 South to 200 South) as a vibrant and engaging district.

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In the 2013 Session, Utah Legislators Make Changes to Lien Laws
Posted on Apr. 12, 2013
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Statutes of Limitations May Not Apply to Government Entities
Posted on Mar. 14, 2013
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Construction Law
Sometimes a Lien Waiver Isn't a Lien Waiver
Posted on Oct. 26, 2012

The Utah Court of Appeals recently held in Lane Myers Construction, LLC v. Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. that a contractor’s certification that there were no liens or claims that might result in a lien was not equivalent to a written waiver and release of lien rights form required by the Utah mechanics’ lien act.

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Construction Law
Texas Architect Owes No Inspection Duty to Third Parties
Posted on Oct. 1, 2012

The Texas Supreme Court recently allowed to stand a 2011 ruling by an appellate court that an architect had no fault for the failure of a contractor to follow construction documents.  The plaintiff in the case suffered spinal damage when she and a friend stepped onto the third-story balcony of a home they were visiting. The balcony broke away from the house and the women fell to the ground.  It was determined that a subcontractor had attached the balcony using nails rather than bolts as shown in the construction documents.

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Construction Law
Understanding Utah's Preconstruction and Construction Lien Laws- Part 5
Posted on Sep. 6, 2012

Once a preconstruction lien or construction lien has been recorded, a lawsuit to foreclose the lien must be filed within 180 days following the day on which the lien was recorded.  Aside from the property encumbrance the lien provides, lien claimants who prevail on their lien foreclosure lawsuit are entitled to an award of their reasonable attorney fees and costs of court, in addition to any interest on the principal amount owed.  The award of reasonable attorney fees mitigates the high cost of litigation to foreclose a lien.

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Construction Law
Understanding Utah's Preconstruction and Construction Lien Laws- Part 4
Posted on Sep. 5, 2012

Preconstruction and construction lien rights are subject to strict timeframes for filing a notice of lien.  A preconstruction lien claimant must file with the recorder of the county in which the project is located a written notice to hold and claim a lien.  A notice to hold and claim a lien must be filed within ninety days after completing a preconstruction service.  A notice of preconstruction lien must include (1) the claimant's name, mailing address, and telephone number, (2) a statement that the claimant claims a preconstruction lien, (3) the date the claimant's notice of retention was filed, (4) the name of the person who employed the claimant, (5) a general description of the preconstruction service provided by the claimant, (6) the date that the claimant last provided preconstruction service, (7) the name, if known, of the reputed owner or, if not known, the name of the record owner, (8) a description of the project property sufficient for identification, (9) the principal amount, excluding interest, costs, and attorney fees, claimed by the claimant, (10) the claimant's signature or the signature of the claimant's authorized agent, and (10) an acknowledgment or certificate as required under Title 57, Chapter 3, Recording of Documents.  Notices of preconstruction lien on residential projects must also include the statement specified in section 38-11-107 of the Utah Code.

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Construction Law
Understanding Utah's Preconstruction and Construction Lien Laws- Part 3
Posted on Sep. 4, 2012

In 2005, the Utah legislature created the State Construction Registry.  This registry is designed to provide a central repository for notices filed in connection with all construction projects in Utah.  Primary filing and access to the registry as well as notification to interested persons is done electronically.  The filing requirements have changed over the years, with the changes in 2011 being significant.

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Construction Law
Understanding Utah's Preconstruction and Construction Lien Laws- Part 2
Posted on Aug. 31, 2012

Utah’s pre-2011 lien laws gave lien rights to architects, engineers, and others who performed services prior to construction. However, there was a disconnect in adjudging the priority of their liens. Lien foreclosure lawsuits often determine whether a lien has priority over other encumbrances on the subject property, such as a bank’s deed of trust or a competing lien. The pre-2011 laws provided that all liens took effect as of the first date of visible construction on the property. If visible construction commenced before another encumbrance was recorded, lien claimants had priority over the later encumbrance.  Priority equals leverage, as a lien having priority can foreclose out a later encumbrance.

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Construction Law
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About Adam

Attorney Adam T. Mow

Adam is a trusted resource for architects, engineers and other members of the construction industry in litigation, risk management, contract negotiations and mechanics’ liens. Adam is also a licensed architect and a past president of the Utah chapter of the American Institute of Architects. He has been elected by his peers to the Utah Legal Elite since 2009.

Awards and Recognition

AV Rating

Excellence in the Study of Architecture, American Institute of Architects Certificate of Merit, 1999

CALI Award for Excellence in Mediation and Advanced Negotiation, 2003

Community Mediator of the Year, Utah Dispute Resolution, 2007

Graduate of the Last Decade, Ball State University, 2008

Utah Business Magazine, Legal Elite, 2009-Present

Mountain States Rising Stars (Construction Litigation), 2009-Present