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Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 116817
Experience:  Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
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We had a new roof and porch installed 7 years ago. The porch

Customer Question

We had a new roof and porch installed 7 years ago. The porch is now leaking both outside and inside the house when there is heavy rain. And when we wanted to finish the attic the contractor that came said that the wood used under the shingles wasn't new
and showed me the difference. Yet it was stated in the contract that he would have been replacing the old with new. We called the contractor who did the roof to take a look at all the problems that have occured since we are within the 15 year warranty and
he said he wasn't fixing a thing. How can I proceed?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
If you recently discovered the leaking and the construction work is defective, you are allowed to sue the contractor who did the work for their negligent construction, since under NJ law the contractor is liable any hidden defects which materialize within 10 years of the construction.
If the contractor is saying he is not fixing his negligent work, your next step is you will have to file a suit against the contractor for the costs it will take to repair the negligent work and damage caused by that work. So you need to get another expert out there to examine the negligent work and have them write up what exactly is negligent about the work and what it will cost to repair the negligent work. They will need to also testify in any suit you file against the contractor, which since the contractor said he is not fixing anything is your only real remaining recourse.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Will he be covering the court fees? Would my home insurance be able to step in?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
thank you for your reply.
Under the American court system, each party is liable for their own court costs and attorney's fees unless there is a statute providing to the contrary. There is no statute providing for the payment of costs and fees for a construction defect case I am afraid.
You can check with your homeowners, but most homeowner policies do not cover construction defects, it is between you and the contractor I am afraid. But you DO have a case against the contractor if you sue him and you should win based on your information above.
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