Throughout the 25 year history of the firm, we have responded to clients who have suffered catastrophic damage to property they own. From a 433 unit apartment complex that burned to the ground in the Oakland fire to hundreds of homes damaged by landslides, the firm has responded when Mother Nature has wreaked havoc.
Over the last 12 years, the firm has provided help to condominium associations where defective construction has caused millions of dollars of damage to homes less than four years old.
Regardless of the cause of the property damage or the nature and extent of the problems, our approach has always been the same: a property damage solution, not just a legal solution.
The Initial Client Meeting
At the initial meeting, we ask the prospective client to tell their story. In the case of homeowner associations, board members tell a common one: within a year or two of buying brand new homes (and sometimes within months) various homeowners experience leaks around windows, mold in entry ways, parking garage floods, and bills far exceeding the reserves their developers promised in Public Offering Statements.
At the initial meeting we will assign a team of lawyers and paraprofessionals dedicated to the case. Typically, the team members will include:
Lead Trial Counsel. Each team is led by a seasoned jury trial lawyer experienced in construction defect trials who have won significant jury trial awards in condominium representation.
Litigation Team Lawyers. Each of these lawyers leads the preparation of a Litigation Strategy and Design, and in any given case they are primarily responsible for document exchange between the litigating parties, legal motions with the Court, depositions, and trial and evidence preparation.
In-House Construction Professionals. Over the last 12 years, Ashbaugh Beal has innovated the representation of homeowner associations by using in-house construction professionals on the Team. These professionals have significant field experience in project management, project scheduling, investigation and client service. They help us treat each association problem as a “building problem” not just a “case.” Once the litigation is over, our construction professionals help transition the Board to the job of assembling a repair team and beginning the actual repairs themselves.
Team Paralegals. The Team Paralegals assist homeowners in gathering documents required during the litigation process, and field phone calls from homeowners regarding litigation activity.
Team Coordinator. The Team Coordinator acts as “central dispatching” so that board members and other homeowners can always reach the team member they need to speak to when they need to speak to them. The Team Coordinator is also a resource for property managers, lenders, real estate agents, and others who need public record information during the litigation process.
Since 1995, our teams have recovered well in excess of $100 million for condominium associations and apartment owners from developers and insurance companies. We have represented close to 100 condominium associations and apartment house owners with calamities ranging from defective construction to fires to sprinkler inundations to sewage backups and mold litigation to attacks of pecking birds.