The Connecticut Appellate Court Decides That Construction Contractor Was Not Obligated To Continue Accelerated Schedule to Mitigate Its Damages Following Late Delivery of Materials by Supplier

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The lawsuit arose out of the late delivery of materials on a construction project, which is a frequent problem on construction projects.

April 11, 2022
Robert M. Barrack - Gordon & Rees

In United Concrete Prods. v. NJR Constr., LLC, 207 Conn. App. 551, 263 A.3d 823 (2021), the Connecticut Appellate Court has issued a decision that should be of interest to the Connecticut construction industry and the construction bar. The lawsuit arose out of the late delivery of materials on a construction project, which is a frequent problem on construction projects. In United Concrete Products, the defendant general contractor, NJR Construction, LLC (“NJR”) was retained by the State of Connecticut Department of Transportation (“DOT”) to replace a bridge over the Hockanum River (“Project”). Id. at 555-58 (2021). The Prime Contract provided that NJR with an eight-week time-frame to perform the work, at which time the road would be closed to traffic. Id. The Prime Contract also provided for a bonus of $3,000 for each day the road was opened to traffic prior to the eight week deadline of August 8, 2016, and for liquidated damages of $3,000 for each day the road remained closed beyond the deadline. Id.

NJR subsequently entered into a purchase order (“Subcontract”) with the plaintiff, United Concrete Products, Inc. (“United”), whereby United agreed to provide certain concrete components for the Project, including ten pre-stressed concrete beams. Id. The Subcontract required that United deliver the concrete beams by June 7, 2016, but, NJR did not actually schedule the delivery until June 29, 2016. Id. Nevertheless, even with that schedule NJR could have reopened the road by July 19, 2016, which would have allowed it to receive the full $60,000 incentive bonus. However, United did not deliver the concrete beams until July 26, 2016, which caused NJR to lose the incentive bonus, be assessed liquidated damages by the DOT, and to incur additional delay damages. Id. After deducting the amount of $179,500 in damages that it incurred due to United’s late delivery of the beams, NJR paid United the balance of $66,074.75. Id.

Mr. Barrack may be contacted at rbarrack@grsm.com



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