#5 CDJ Topic: David Belasco v. Gary Loren Wells et al. (2015) B254525

December 30, 2015
Beverley BevenFlorez-CDJ STAFF

Chapman Glucksman Dean Roeb & Barger attorneys Richard H. Glucksman, Jon A. Turigliatto, and David A. Napper analyzed the above mentioned Belasco case, in which “the Second District Court of Appeal made clear that settlement agreements containing waviers of unknown claims in connection with a construction of a property, absent fraud or misrepresentation, will be upheld.” Glucksman, et al. explained that “the homeowner plaintiff had made a claim against the builder pursuant to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 896 (“Right to Repair”) and settled for a cash payment and obtained a Release of all Claims including for all known and unknown claims. The court held that homeowner’s subsequent construction defect claim was barred pursuant to the terms and conditions of the earlier release.”
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In another article on the subject, Edward A. Jaeger, Jr. and William L. Doerler of White and Williams LLP concluded, “The Court of Appeal’s holding establishes that, despite the prohibition against the release of unknown claims set forth in section 1524 and the protections provided to homeowners by the Right to Repair Act, California homeowners can, in fact, release or waive claims against homebuilders for future, latent construction defects. To release or waive such claims, the language of any settlement agreement should be unequivocal.”
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