ASCE Member Insurance Blog

Professional Corporations Do Not Always Protect Licensed Engineers From Liability

Posted on 8/25/2017 by ASCE Insurance in Liability Licensing civil engineer professional liability

By Sarah A. Johnson, Esq.

One of the purposes of creating a corporate entity is to limit the liability of those individuals involved with the corporation. Engineers often believe the professional corporation will protect them from liability, in other words, the corporation is liable, not the individual. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.

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Claims Retrospective: Identify and Document the Work You're Hired to Do—and Not Do

Posted on 8/25/2017 by ASCE Insurance in Documentation civil engineer professional liability liability claim

It is not unusual to discover problems outside a project's scope of work that may adversely affect the outcome, especially when the project involves an aging building or the property around it. Nor is it uncommon to find clients who do not wish to pay for remedying these "other" problems. It is always advisable to document all recommended work for a project, including other deficiencies, as well as any direct instructions from the client. To illustrate this point, the following real-world example provides a context for further explanation and discussion.

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Jurisdictions Where the Economic Loss Doctrine Bars Extra-Contractual Claims Highlight the Importance of Well-Drafted Contracts

Posted on 6/15/2017 by ASCE Insurance in civil engineering civil engineer jurisdictions extra-contractual claims

By Sarah A. Johnson, Esq.

The economic loss doctrine is the legal principle that economic loss may not be recovered under a negligence or tort theory.1 “Economic loss” has been defined as damages for inadequate value, cost of repair and replacement of a defective product, or the consequent loss of profits, as well as the loss of value of the product due to its inferior quality.2 The theory behind this doctrine is that a purchaser’s wish to reap the benefits of his bargain is not an interest protected by tort law.3 Rather, the remedy for economic loss relating to the purchaser’s disappointed expectations properly lies in contract.4

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