In this article, Philadelphia counsel Andrew D. Klein and associate William L. Carr discuss the implications for Philadelphia landowners and developers after the Superior Court decision in Trevdan Building Supply v. Toll Brothers Inc. In this decision, the court appears to have created a new basis on which a subcontractor can pursue an owner directly for the sins of the general contractor without the need to pursue (and apparently in addition to pursuing) a mechanics’ lien claim.
Whether Trevdan will be limited to its facts, or to situations were a defaulting general contractor seeks bankruptcy protection, remains to be seen. Until its scope is determined, however, Andrew and William recommend that Pennsylvania owners and developers include limiting language in their contracts with a general contractor in an effort to limit their exposure “for the sins of their general contractors to the extraordinary remedy established by the Legislature: a mechanics’ lien.”
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