Ohio Construction Law Questions & Answers

Q: How long does a contractor have to wait before they file a lien on a c o d payment job?

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Feb 22, 2019
Joseph Jaap's answer
Contractor does not have to wait. But contractor must file a mechanic's lien within 60 days after the date of last work on a residential project. Lien rights are lost after 60 days.

Q: Is there a "lemon law" per say on houses? We just found a serious issue after buying in December 2016 that was "covered"

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law, Contracts and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Answered on Jun 1, 2018
Bruce Martin Broyles' answer
In Ohio, the seller of a home can be held liable for actively concealing defects in the property. The active concealment would constitute fraud and your statute of limitations does not begin to run until the fraud is discovered. Your claim is very dependent upon facts and what evidence you will be able to prove those facts. First, you state: The basement had been freshly painted prior to showing with a very thick paint..." You will have to demonstrate that the basement was painted shortly...

Q: How long do I have to file a breach of contract claim in a Cleveland-based construction law dispute?

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on May 11, 2018
Bruce Martin Broyles' answer
The statute of limitations for a breach of oral contract claim is six years. R.C. 2305.07. "The cause of action arises when the plaintiff discovers the omission to perform as agreed in the oral contract." Aluminum Line Prods. Co. v. Brad Smith Roofing Co., 109 Ohio App.3d 246, 258, 671 N.E.2d 1343 (8th Dist.1996).

The Ohio General Assembly amended R.C. 2305.06, effective September 28, 2012, and the amended version now states in part that an action on a contract or promise in writing...

Q: The city I live in replaced all the main sewer lines this past summer about 8 months ago. Since then, three houses in a

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law, Consumer Law, Land Use & Zoning and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Answered on Apr 3, 2018
Joseph Jaap's answer
The neighbors should band together and hire an engineer to inspect and determine a cause for the problem, then the neighbors can retain an attorney to review the situation, talk with the city, and try to find a resolution.

Q: Can I get my house free or a lower price on the land contract due to repairs and problems the owner neglected to fix

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Construction Law and Land Use & Zoning for Ohio on
Answered on Mar 14, 2018
Joseph Jaap's answer
Buyer and seller must follow the written terms of the land contract they signed for purchase and sale, including the purchase price. A buyer can notify the seller of problems and try to renegotiate, but the seller is under no obligation to agree to any changes. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local real estate attorney who can review the land contract and all the other facts of the situation, and advise you about your options.

Q: Is it legal for a general contractor to backcharge for "quality issues" that were not previously addressed?

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Feb 12, 2018
Joseph Jaap's answer
Check your contract for any dispute resolution procedures. If there are none, then your choices are work out a settlement, mediation, arbitration, or litigation. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local construction litigation attorney.

Q: My contractor lied and I just found out he is not actually licensed. Can I fire him before the work is finished?

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Feb 2, 2018
Bruce Martin Broyles' answer
I would have the work inspected and make certain that all proper building permits have been pulled.

In Ohio you have to have a license to perform the following types of construction work:

Electrical, HVAC, Refrigeration, Plumbing, or Hydronics

If your project did not include any of these items then he may have not needed a license. In addition you local community may require a license to perform other general contracting.

Q: I signed a contract for basement finishing. Can I fire the contractor and get money back even though some work is done?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Jan 22, 2018
Joseph Jaap's answer
You can send the contractor a notice of termination and demand return of the remainder of excess funds already paid. If contractor will not return them, then you can sue in small claims court up to $6000, or in municipal court up to $15,000. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local construction law attorney.

Q: Is it legal in the state of Ohio for a public construction project to block off and deny entrance to a private driveway

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Answered on Oct 3, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
They are allowed to do what is reasonable and necessary for the work they are doing within their public utility easement. If you talk to them, they will probably do their best to accommodate you. If you want to take legal action, then use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local real estate litigation attorney to review the situation and advise if there is any reasonable basis for you to file an action in court.

Q: If a project loan expires due to the contractor taking too long to finish the job is the contract voided

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Jun 5, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
If the contractor did not complete the job in the time as specified in the contract, then the contractor has breached the contract. That gives you grounds to notify him that the contract is terminated. You are obligated to pay him what he is owed, minus any extra amounts you incur to finish the job. But he could file a lien and could sue you. Use the Find a Lawyer tab to consult a local attorney to review the contract and advise you.

Q: I purchased a shower surround wall and base from a local Lowes store in 2015. It is leaking in two cracked places.

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law and Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on May 24, 2017
Mark Martin Turner's answer
Your recourse depends on a few different issues. First, when it was installed, did the installer provide you a warranty? 2nd, what is the reason it is cracked and leaking? 3rd, does the product itself about warranty?

If the cracks or because of misuse by the consumer, you may not have any recourse.

If the cracks are due to a defect in the product, you then need to look at the product warranty. The warranty should state the period of time it is good for and what is covered....

Q: can the contractor put lien on your house if they were not able to finish their work they promised

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law, Real Estate Law and Contracts for Ohio on
Answered on Mar 29, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
Yes, a contractor can place a lien on your house, and they can foreclose on that lien. If you dispute their lien claim, you can send them a notice to commence suit on their lien, and if they don't, then the lien will become void. If they do commence suit, then you can provide evidence of their unfinished work. If you do nothing, the lien will expire automatically after 6 years. But if you refinance or sell the house during that 6 years, you will have to pay the lien in full to get the...

Q: How long do I have to file a mechanic's lien after the work has been done in Ohio?

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Mar 6, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
It depends on if the work was done on residential premises for the owner of the premises where the owner uses it as a principal residence. If so, then you could have as little as zero days up to 60 days. You must file a mechanic's lien affidavit before the owner pays the general contractor in full, but not beyond 60 days after your last work. If the premises and the project do not qualify as a residential project, i.e. it was a commercial project, you would have up to 75 days after you...

Q: We have begun the process to build and using a realtor who happens to also be a representative for the builder?

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Jan 17, 2017
Joseph Jaap's answer
Is she acting as a dual agent, representing both you and the builder? She would have had you sign a Dual Agency Disclosure to do that. If not, then she is acting as builder's listing agent. An agent who is representing the builder is not representing you at all. If she is the builder's listing agent, then her legal duty is to the builder, not you, although she might seem very friendly to you trying to get you to sign a contract and earn her commission. Different builders handle...

Q: Hired a general contractor and after the second draw we stoped hearing from him, is it worth suing?

1 Answer | Asked in Construction Law for Ohio on
Answered on Jan 13, 2016
Matthew Williams' answer
Yes its worth suing him. It sounds like he stole $26,000 from you. You shouldn't just keep his tools though. That's risky. The proper remedy here is to file a lawsuit, not take matters into your own hands.

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