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disputing site classification

Discussion in 'Legal Issues' started by Oshawott, 10th Dec, 2015.

  1. Oshawott

    Oshawott Well-Known Member

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    hi,

    just need some general advice for now regarding my situation.

    at the start of the year, i have subdivided a property and sold the newly created land. As part of subdivision a geotech report was carried out and the site was classified as "A".

    the site was advertised as per geotech report and was purchased by a couple. special clause in sale contract state they have X number of days to obtain their own report if they wished to confirm and also they were supplied a copy of the original geotech report. (if within X days they found out site to be not as advertised they can back out)

    anyway, out of the blue, RE agent recieved a letter saying that the couple's builder says the site was not class A and they are seeking us to pay for the cost (as priced by their builder) to remedy the site.

    does anyone know where we stand legally? we did not deceive anyone because we just followed the geotech report and provided it to buyer. Are we liable for anything?

    Any advice as to what to do would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    Legal advice time? It might turn on the wording of the sale contract and clauses
     
  3. Ace in the Hole

    Ace in the Hole Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Is the builder qualified to classify the site?
     
    bob shovel likes this.
  4. Terry_w

    Terry_w Solicitor, Finance Broker, CTA Business Member

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    In a difficult position.
    If your report was wrong it may be a matter of false and misleading advertising.

    You should seek legal advice (from a lawyer!)
     
  5. Oshawott

    Oshawott Well-Known Member

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    the builder used a different company to do the soil test.
     
  6. bob shovel

    bob shovel Well-Known Member

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    Did they get the geotech done within the contract period?

    Get a third guy out to lock in an answer??
     
  7. Westminster

    Westminster Tigress at Tiger Developments Business Member

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    @Oshawott

    So I'm assuming this is WAY after the back out period you gave them for the sale?

    Did you use a lawyer or conveyancer or REA to word the clause in the O&A? If you used a lawyer then talk to them now - or the conveyancer but they can only give general advice.

    It sounds like you and the REA did the advert and sale in the right way with appropriate information from a licensed geotech company. I'm not sure you need to dispute their findings but affirm that it was sold in the right manner.
     
  8. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    • How many soil tests did each party undertake to come to a conclusion that it was/wasn't "A"
    • Does the site have cut & fill
    • Were the tests taken in the same/similar locations
    • Did either geotech hit a floater?
    • Is it a brown field site or greenfield?
    There are too many unknowns without having read more about the site itself to draw any conclusions. It may be cut & run situation if you're bod was wrong (or wrongly instructed).
     
  9. LifesGood

    LifesGood Home Building & Development Consultant Business Member

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    Do you have the builder's soil report? Geotechnical reports will state the site classification, but generally not the recommended footing detail. For example, a site may be can A class site however a B1 footing detail could be recommended by the engineers which might cost and extra 5k over a standard D10 footing detail.
     
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  10. Oshawott

    Oshawott Well-Known Member

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    just REA to word the clause. settlement was 6-7 months ago. they did not do their own geotech during the clause period.



    it was clearly stated that upon acceptance they have X days to confirm the classification at their own expense with option to back out if not correct. also they signed that they received copy of the geotech report that was done as part of subdivision.

    thats why i'm a bit shocked when i found out late this afternoon. a classic WTF moment.
     
    Last edited: 11th Dec, 2015
  11. Bonz

    Bonz Member

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    I do not believe you have a problem.

    If your geo tech report was carried out by a properly qualified engineer you have every right to rely on the same. If your engineer got it wrong, then if you get sued, you can join your engineer as a party to the action and he/she or it will be liable for any loss and damage suffered by the purchaser.

    There is also the issue of what site remediation is required. I would not accept the builders cost for site remediation. Depending on what the purchasers are wanting to build there maybe little if any site remediation required. A simple beefing up of the footings maybe sufficient.