Mark Collinsworth, Speaker at West Coast Casualty's Construction Defect Seminar 2015

Mark Collinsworth will speak at the 22nd Annual West Coast Casualty Conference. West Coast Casualty's Seminar will take place at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, CA May 14th and 15th. Mark is a speaker on "Guardians of the Subcontractor Galaxy" taking place on Friday May 15th at 7:30 a.m. in the South Ballroom.  

Collinsworth, Specht, Calkins & Giampaoli Announces the Addition of Matt Giampaoli as Managing Partner in Firm's New Bay Area Office and has made Anthony Gaeta Partner in San Diego Office.
Collinsworth, Specht, Calkins and Giampaoli is proud to announce the addition of Matt Giampaoli to the firm as the managing partner of the firm’s new Bay Area office beginning May 1, 2014. Matt brings to the firm over 25 years experience in civil litigation, with the bulk of his practice representing developers, general contractors, and product manufacturers in construction defect and contract matters. Matt also represents a variety of businesses as defendants in personal injury matters. Matt, who graduated from San Diego State University and then Santa Clara School of Law, has spent his entire career based in Northern California, and handles cases from Sacramento to the Central Valley. Matt will be joined in the Pleasanton office by Victoria Prange. Vicki graduated from the University of San Diego and Santa Clara School of Law, and brings with her over 17 years of experience. Vicki represents clients in both commercial and residential construction defect matters, insurance coverage, and bankruptcy. The new office allows Collinsworth, Specht, Calkins & Giampaoli to better serve its clients’ needs throughout the entire State of California. We look forward to introducing all of you to Matt and Vicki, and demonstrating the firm’s expanded capabilities and talent throughout California.

In addition, CSCG has made Anthony Gaeta a partner in its San Diego office. Tony has been handling the defense of developers and general contractors in construction defect litigation for 8+ years. His practice includes residential construction, mid-rise and high rise commercial construction, and condominium conversions.
How to Handle the Construction Arbitration (ADR & Construction)

December 18, 2013
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM PT

Featuring:
Clayton M. Anderson, Esq.
Mark T. Collinsworth, Esq.
Carl F. Ingwalson, Esq.

Presented by the Alternative Dispute Resolution and Construction Law Sections of the SDCBA
This CLE is worth 1.0 GEN

In light of last year’s Pinnacle decision, this one-hour seminar will present timely, practical, step by step guidance for handling binding construction arbitration. The presentation is “practice tested”. Each of the presenters has arbitrated construction cases to award and will give practical advice in the efficiency and presentation of the case to a single arbitrator.

Click here to register

This is a luncheon event. Registrations are due by noon on December 13, 2013 to avoid late fee. Online registration closes at noon on December 17, 2013. Walk-ins will be accommodated as space allows and are not guaranteed meal service. By registering, you are agreeing not to record, photograph or otherwise capture any video or audio of this seminar. The SDCBA has the right to refuse registrations. Late registrants and walk-ins will incur a $5.00 late registration fee. Registration fees apply to the actual program being purchased and are not transferable to another seminar attendee or online program. Registrations will be held until 15 minutes after the published seminar start time. The SDCBA certifies that this activity has been approved for MCLE by the State Bar of California.
MC Consultants’ 19th Annual West Region Construction Defect & Insurance Coverage Conference


Scott Calkins participated as a panelist at MC Consultants' 19th Annual West Region Construction Defect & Insurance Coverage Conference at the Hilton Bayfront in San Diego on September 20, 2013. Scott's panel discussed recent developments with the "Right to Repair" laws governed by Civil Code section 896 et seq., commonly referred to SB800. Scott was chosen for the panel based upon his 18 years of experience in representing and aggressively defending developers and builders in construction defect cases.

The panel discussed SB800 related topics such as current issues arising out of SB800 pre-litigation procedures, current issues post SB800 pre-litigation procedures, pretrial and motions, and complex trials. Scott also discussed the problematic ruling by the California Court of Appeals in Liberty Mutual Insurance Company v. Brookfield Crystal Cove LL, 2013 Cal. App. LEXIS 687 (Cal. App. 4th Dist. Aug. 28, 2013), wherein the court held that Civil Code section 896 does not provide an exclusive remedy in cases where actual damage has occurred because of construction defects. This will undoubtedly be a drastic change in the way all construction defect cases are pled and resolved since the California Legislature enacted the Right to Repair Act in 2002.

Collinsworth, Specht and Calkins will be keeping a close eye on the court’s ruling as it is challenged by the construction industry and their legal teams. If you would like additional information regarding the topics discussed at the conference, please contact Scott Calkins at scalkins@cslawoffices.com or call (858) 549-2800.
CSCG Prevails at Arbitration
In December, 2012, Mark Collinsworth and Jay Specht arbitrated the claim of the single homeowner on behalf of one of CSCG’s residential homebuilder clients. The claims had previously been compelled to arbitration pursuant to the terms and conditions of the applicable Purchase & Sale Agreement. The Petitioner was represented by Teresa Libertino and Larry Osuch, and the matter was heard by Judge John W. Kennedy (Ret.) of JAMS.

The Petitioner had an original cost of repair of $37,935. Following motions in limine, the Petitioners were only permitted to present a claim of $27,220 during the arbitration. In addition, they sought $14,475 in expert investigative expenses pursuant to Civil Code Section 944. Of this total claim, the arbitrator awarded the Petitioners $4,541.65 in damages and $1,800 in expert investigative costs. Following the Interim Arbitration Award, Petitioners sought $11,972 in costs as the prevailing party. CSCG argued the applicable arbitration agreement required both sides to bear their own fees and costs, and Judge Kennedy agreed. Petitioners then argued the provision requiring both parties to bear their own fees and costs was unconscionable, but CSCG reminded Judge Kennedy the court previously reviewed the arbitration provision and chose to compel arbitration, thereby at least by inference holding the arbitration provision was not unconscionable. Again, Judge Kennedy agreed, and denied Petitioners claim for costs in its entirety. Accordingly, despite more than $26,000 in out-of-pocket expenses, the Petitioners’ total award was less than $6,350.

Given the number of ongoing cases Ms. Libertino has against CSCG’s client, our client sees this is a substantial victory.
Mark Collinsworth has been invited to join the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance October 24, 2012

Collinsworth, Specht & Calkins, LLP is pleased to announce that Mark Collinsworth has been invited to join the prestigious Claims and Litigation Management Alliance. The CLM is a nonpartisan alliance comprised of thousands of insurance companies, corporations, Corporate Counsel, Litigation and Risk Managers, claims professionals and attorneys. Through education and collaboration the organization’s goals are to create a common interest in the representation by firms of companies, and to promote and further the highest standards of litigation management in pursuit of client defense. Selected attorneys and law firms are extended membership by invitation only based on nominations from CLM Fellows.

Mark T. Collinsworth has handled a variety of construction litigation for the past 18 years, and is currently a shareholder in the law firm of Collinsworth, Specht & Calkins, L.L.P. which has offices in San Diego and Phoenix. Mr. Collinsworth’s practice predominately includes the representation of residential homebuilders, and he recently completed three binding arbitrations on behalf of a developer which were exclusively governed by the SB 800 standards. Mr. Collinsworth received his undergraduate degree from Occidental College and his J.D. from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. He is a member of the California and Arizona bar, and has given several presentations to builders and insurance carriers regarding various topics involving risk management, contractual indemnity, loss shifting, and the changing landscape of construction defect litigation in California under SB 800.

Please contact Mark Collinsworth for additional information.

California CSLB now allows for licensing of LLCs

California Senate Bill No. 392 (Statutes of 2010, Chapter 698) now authorizes the California State Contractors’ License Board (“CSLB”) to issue contractors’ licenses to limited liability companies (“LLCs”). Prior to the passage of the bill, the issuance of contractors’ licenses was limited to individual owners, partnerships, and corporations. With the passage of 392, contractors can now protect themselves as an LLC without being subject to the expense and complex procedures required to form a corporation.
The primary requirements for and components of LLC licenses are as follows:

      • Personnel of Record: Every person who is an officer, member, responsible manager, or director must be listed as personnel of record on LLC applications. (B&P Code section 7065.)

 

 

    • Qualifying Individual: LLC licenses must be qualified by a responsible managing employee (RME), responsible managing officer (RMO), responsible managing manager, or responsible managing member. (B&P Code section 7065.)

 

 
 

    • $1 Million Personal Liability during Secretary of State Suspension: If an LLC license is suspended for failing to be registered and in good standing with the Secretary of State, each person within the LLC may be held personally liable up to $1 million each during the time the LLC is suspended. (B&P Code section 7076.2.)

 

 
 

    • Liability Insurance Information on Contracts: Specific general liability insurance information is required to be included on the LLC’s home improvement and service and repair contracts. (B&P Code sections 7159 and 7159.10.)

 

 
 

    • License Number Reissuance: Sole owner and corporate license numbers may be reissued to LLCs under certain circumstances. (B&P Code section 7075.1)

 

 
 

    • Joint Venture Licenses: An LLC may be listed as an entity on a joint venture license. (B&P Code section 7029.)

 

 
 

    • Partnership Licenses: LLCs may serve as a general partner on a partnership license provided the LLC meets the requirements relating to the additional surety bond and liability insurance. An LLC serving as a limited partner on a partnership license is not required to meet the additional surety bond and liability insurance requirements.

 

 
 

    • Business Name Styles: According to the Secretary of State’s office, LLC business names have specific requirements and restrictions. In general, LLC business names must end with the phrase "Limited Liability Company” or the abbreviation "LLC" or "L.L.C."

 

 
 
The following are additional requirements of LLC licenses:

      • $100,000 LLC Employee/Worker Bond;

 

 

    • $100,000 surety bond (in addition to the $12,500 contractor bond) is required for the benefit of any employee or worker damaged by the LLC’s failure to pay wages, interest on wages, or fringe benefits, as well as other contributions (not required for inactive LLC licenses). (Business and Professions Code section 7071.6.5.);

 

 
 

    • $1 Million Liability Insurance Minimum; and

 

 
 

    • Liability insurance with the cumulative limit of $1 million for licensees with five or fewer persons listed as members. Also, an additional $100,000 is required for each additional member, not to exceed $5 million total. (B&P Code section 7071.19.).

 

 
 
Please contact Mark Collinsworth for additional information regarding the creation and licensing of an LLC.

Recent Developments in Employment Law: Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court

The California Supreme Court recently handed down a major employment law decision in the case of Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court, No. D049331 (April 12, 2012). Brinker involved a group of Chili’s employees who brought suit alleging they were denied rest periods, denied meal periods, and were required to work off the clock during meal breaks. The main issue decided by the court was whether an employer was required to ensure its employees did not perform any work during meal and rest breaks.

The court held that an employer’s duty to its employees is satisfied so long as the employer provides its employees with an opportunity to take meal periods and rest breaks. The court further held employers do not need to take affirmative steps to ensure that meal periods and rest breaks are actually utilized by employees. In addition, the court attempted to codify the rest and meal periods an employer must provide its employees.

The Brinker decision is a major victory for California employers. If you would like more information on the Brinker decision, lunch periods, meal breaks or have any other employment law-related questions, please contact Associate Anthony P. Gaeta at agaeta@cslawoffices.com or at (619) 908-1141.

Scott Calkins and Anthony Gaeta obtained a defense verdict in a three week multi-million dollar lawsuit against a developer client of CSC&G.
This week Scott Calkins and Anthony Gaeta obtained a defense verdict in a three week multi-million dollar lawsuit against a developer client of CSC&G. The case initially involved construction defect claims and a claim of breach of fiduciary duty brought by the HOA of a downtown San Diego high-rise condominium. The construction defect claims were settled by the project’s general contractor on the eve of trial, leaving the breach of fiduciary claim. In closing arguments, the HOA asked the jury for in excess of $3 million. Scott and Anthony argued the initial reserve funding by their client was appropriate and met all applicable requirements, and hence, there was no liability. The jury returned a defense verdict in favor of our client. We congratulate Scott and Anthony, and everyone who worked to achieve such a favorable result for our client.
Collinsworth, Specht, Calkins & Giampaoli Announces the Addition of Matt Giampaoli as Managing Partner in Firm's New Bay Area Office and has made Anthony Gaeta Partner in San Diego Office.
Collinsworth, Specht, Calkins and Giampaoli is proud to announce the addition of Matt Giampaoli to the firm as the managing partner of the firm’s new Bay Area office beginning May 1, 2014. Matt brings to the firm over 25 years experience in civil litigation, with the bulk of his practice representing developers, general contractors, and product manufacturers in construction defect and contract matters. Matt also represents a variety of businesses as defendants in personal injury matters. Matt, who graduated from San Diego State University and then Santa Clara School of Law, has spent his entire career based in Northern California, and handles cases from Sacramento to the Central Valley. Matt will be joined in the Pleasanton office by Victoria Prange. Vicki graduated from the University of San Diego and Santa Clara School of Law, and brings with her over 17 years of experience. Vicki represents clients in both commercial and residential construction defect matters, insurance coverage, and bankruptcy. The new office allows Collinsworth, Specht, Calkins & Giampaoli to better serve its clients’ needs throughout the entire State of California. We look forward to introducing all of you to Matt and Vicki, and demonstrating the firm’s expanded capabilities and talent throughout California.

In addition, CSCG has made Anthony Gaeta a partner in its San Diego office. Tony has been handling the defense of developers and general contractors in construction defect litigation for 8+ years. His practice includes residential construction, mid-rise and high rise commercial construction, and condominium conversions.
How to Handle the Construction Arbitration (ADR & Construction)

December 18, 2013
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM PT

Featuring:
Clayton M. Anderson, Esq.
Mark T. Collinsworth, Esq.
Carl F. Ingwalson, Esq.

Presented by the Alternative Dispute Resolution and Construction Law Sections of the SDCBA
This CLE is worth 1.0 GEN

In light of last year’s Pinnacle decision, this one-hour seminar will present timely, practical, step by step guidance for handling binding construction arbitration. The presentation is “practice tested”. Each of the presenters has arbitrated construction cases to award and will give practical advice in the efficiency and presentation of the case to a single arbitrator.

Click here to register

This is a luncheon event. Registrations are due by noon on December 13, 2013 to avoid late fee. Online registration closes at noon on December 17, 2013. Walk-ins will be accommodated as space allows and are not guaranteed meal service. By registering, you are agreeing not to record, photograph or otherwise capture any video or audio of this seminar. The SDCBA has the right to refuse registrations. Late registrants and walk-ins will incur a $5.00 late registration fee. Registration fees apply to the actual program being purchased and are not transferable to another seminar attendee or online program. Registrations will be held until 15 minutes after the published seminar start time. The SDCBA certifies that this activity has been approved for MCLE by the State Bar of California.
MC Consultants’ 19th Annual West Region Construction Defect & Insurance Coverage Conference


Scott Calkins participated as a panelist at MC Consultants' 19th Annual West Region Construction Defect & Insurance Coverage Conference at the Hilton Bayfront in San Diego on September 20, 2013. Scott's panel discussed recent developments with the "Right to Repair" laws governed by Civil Code section 896 et seq., commonly referred to SB800. Scott was chosen for the panel based upon his 18 years of experience in representing and aggressively defending developers and builders in construction defect cases.

The panel discussed SB800 related topics such as current issues arising out of SB800 pre-litigation procedures, current issues post SB800 pre-litigation procedures, pretrial and motions, and complex trials. Scott also discussed the problematic ruling by the California Court of Appeals in Liberty Mutual Insurance Company v. Brookfield Crystal Cove LL, 2013 Cal. App. LEXIS 687 (Cal. App. 4th Dist. Aug. 28, 2013), wherein the court held that Civil Code section 896 does not provide an exclusive remedy in cases where actual damage has occurred because of construction defects. This will undoubtedly be a drastic change in the way all construction defect cases are pled and resolved since the California Legislature enacted the Right to Repair Act in 2002.

Collinsworth, Specht and Calkins will be keeping a close eye on the court’s ruling as it is challenged by the construction industry and their legal teams. If you would like additional information regarding the topics discussed at the conference, please contact Scott Calkins at scalkins@cslawoffices.com or call (858) 549-2800.
CSCG Prevails at Arbitration
In December, 2012, Mark Collinsworth and Jay Specht arbitrated the claim of the single homeowner on behalf of one of CSCG’s residential homebuilder clients. The claims had previously been compelled to arbitration pursuant to the terms and conditions of the applicable Purchase & Sale Agreement. The Petitioner was represented by Teresa Libertino and Larry Osuch, and the matter was heard by Judge John W. Kennedy (Ret.) of JAMS.

The Petitioner had an original cost of repair of $37,935. Following motions in limine, the Petitioners were only permitted to present a claim of $27,220 during the arbitration. In addition, they sought $14,475 in expert investigative expenses pursuant to Civil Code Section 944. Of this total claim, the arbitrator awarded the Petitioners $4,541.65 in damages and $1,800 in expert investigative costs. Following the Interim Arbitration Award, Petitioners sought $11,972 in costs as the prevailing party. CSCG argued the applicable arbitration agreement required both sides to bear their own fees and costs, and Judge Kennedy agreed. Petitioners then argued the provision requiring both parties to bear their own fees and costs was unconscionable, but CSCG reminded Judge Kennedy the court previously reviewed the arbitration provision and chose to compel arbitration, thereby at least by inference holding the arbitration provision was not unconscionable. Again, Judge Kennedy agreed, and denied Petitioners claim for costs in its entirety. Accordingly, despite more than $26,000 in out-of-pocket expenses, the Petitioners’ total award was less than $6,350.

Given the number of ongoing cases Ms. Libertino has against CSCG’s client, our client sees this is a substantial victory.
Mark Collinsworth has been invited to join the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance October 24, 2012

Collinsworth, Specht & Calkins, LLP is pleased to announce that Mark Collinsworth has been invited to join the prestigious Claims and Litigation Management Alliance. The CLM is a nonpartisan alliance comprised of thousands of insurance companies, corporations, Corporate Counsel, Litigation and Risk Managers, claims professionals and attorneys. Through education and collaboration the organization’s goals are to create a common interest in the representation by firms of companies, and to promote and further the highest standards of litigation management in pursuit of client defense. Selected attorneys and law firms are extended membership by invitation only based on nominations from CLM Fellows.

Mark T. Collinsworth has handled a variety of construction litigation for the past 18 years, and is currently a shareholder in the law firm of Collinsworth, Specht & Calkins, L.L.P. which has offices in San Diego and Phoenix. Mr. Collinsworth’s practice predominately includes the representation of residential homebuilders, and he recently completed three binding arbitrations on behalf of a developer which were exclusively governed by the SB 800 standards. Mr. Collinsworth received his undergraduate degree from Occidental College and his J.D. from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. He is a member of the California and Arizona bar, and has given several presentations to builders and insurance carriers regarding various topics involving risk management, contractual indemnity, loss shifting, and the changing landscape of construction defect litigation in California under SB 800.

Please contact Mark Collinsworth for additional information.

California CSLB now allows for licensing of LLCs

California Senate Bill No. 392 (Statutes of 2010, Chapter 698) now authorizes the California State Contractors’ License Board (“CSLB”) to issue contractors’ licenses to limited liability companies (“LLCs”). Prior to the passage of the bill, the issuance of contractors’ licenses was limited to individual owners, partnerships, and corporations. With the passage of 392, contractors can now protect themselves as an LLC without being subject to the expense and complex procedures required to form a corporation.
The primary requirements for and components of LLC licenses are as follows:

      • Personnel of Record: Every person who is an officer, member, responsible manager, or director must be listed as personnel of record on LLC applications. (B&P Code section 7065.)

 

 

    • Qualifying Individual: LLC licenses must be qualified by a responsible managing employee (RME), responsible managing officer (RMO), responsible managing manager, or responsible managing member. (B&P Code section 7065.)

 

 
 

    • $1 Million Personal Liability during Secretary of State Suspension: If an LLC license is suspended for failing to be registered and in good standing with the Secretary of State, each person within the LLC may be held personally liable up to $1 million each during the time the LLC is suspended. (B&P Code section 7076.2.)

 

 
 

    • Liability Insurance Information on Contracts: Specific general liability insurance information is required to be included on the LLC’s home improvement and service and repair contracts. (B&P Code sections 7159 and 7159.10.)

 

 
 

    • License Number Reissuance: Sole owner and corporate license numbers may be reissued to LLCs under certain circumstances. (B&P Code section 7075.1)

 

 
 

    • Joint Venture Licenses: An LLC may be listed as an entity on a joint venture license. (B&P Code section 7029.)

 

 
 

    • Partnership Licenses: LLCs may serve as a general partner on a partnership license provided the LLC meets the requirements relating to the additional surety bond and liability insurance. An LLC serving as a limited partner on a partnership license is not required to meet the additional surety bond and liability insurance requirements.

 

 
 

    • Business Name Styles: According to the Secretary of State’s office, LLC business names have specific requirements and restrictions. In general, LLC business names must end with the phrase "Limited Liability Company” or the abbreviation "LLC" or "L.L.C."

 

 
 
The following are additional requirements of LLC licenses:

      • $100,000 LLC Employee/Worker Bond;

 

 

    • $100,000 surety bond (in addition to the $12,500 contractor bond) is required for the benefit of any employee or worker damaged by the LLC’s failure to pay wages, interest on wages, or fringe benefits, as well as other contributions (not required for inactive LLC licenses). (Business and Professions Code section 7071.6.5.);

 

 
 

    • $1 Million Liability Insurance Minimum; and

 

 
 

    • Liability insurance with the cumulative limit of $1 million for licensees with five or fewer persons listed as members. Also, an additional $100,000 is required for each additional member, not to exceed $5 million total. (B&P Code section 7071.19.).

 

 
 
Please contact Mark Collinsworth for additional information regarding the creation and licensing of an LLC.

Recent Developments in Employment Law: Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court

The California Supreme Court recently handed down a major employment law decision in the case of Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court, No. D049331 (April 12, 2012). Brinker involved a group of Chili’s employees who brought suit alleging they were denied rest periods, denied meal periods, and were required to work off the clock during meal breaks. The main issue decided by the court was whether an employer was required to ensure its employees did not perform any work during meal and rest breaks.

The court held that an employer’s duty to its employees is satisfied so long as the employer provides its employees with an opportunity to take meal periods and rest breaks. The court further held employers do not need to take affirmative steps to ensure that meal periods and rest breaks are actually utilized by employees. In addition, the court attempted to codify the rest and meal periods an employer must provide its employees.

The Brinker decision is a major victory for California employers. If you would like more information on the Brinker decision, lunch periods, meal breaks or have any other employment law-related questions, please contact Associate Anthony P. Gaeta at agaeta@cslawoffices.com or at (619) 908-1141.