Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. Turner Construction Co.

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

December 26, 2019

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA FOR THE USE AND BENEFIT OF MODERN MOSAIC, LTD., a foreign business corporation, Plaintiff - Appellant,
v.
TURNER CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, a New York corporation; TRAVELERS CASUALTY AND SURETY COMPANY OF AMERICA; FEDERAL INSURANCE COMPANY; FIDELITY & DEPOSIT COMPANY OF MARYLAND; ZURICH AMERICAN INSURANCE COMPANY; LIBERTY MUTUAL INSURANCE COMPANY; THE CONTINENTAL INSURANCE COMPANY, Defendants - Appellees.

          Argued: October 31, 2019

          Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia, at Clarksburg. Frederick P. Stamp, Jr., Senior District Judge. (1:16-cv-00012-FPS-MJA)

         ARGUED:

          Edward J. Sheats, SHEATS & BAILEY, PLLC, Liverpool, New York, for Appellant.

          Michael David Griffith, Jr., THOMAS COMBS & SPANN, PLLC, Charleston, West Virginia; Douglas Leo Patin, BRADLEY ARANT BOULT CUMMINGS, Washington, D.C., for Appellees.

         ON BRIEF:

          Jeffrey D. Van Volkenburg, Allison S. McClure, MCNEER HIGHLAND MCMUNN & VARNER, Clarksburg, West Virginia, for Appellant.

          Michael S. Koplan, BRADLEY ARANT BOULT CUMMINGS, Washington, D.C., for Appellees.

          Before WYNN, QUATTLEBAUM, and RUSHING, Circuit Judges.

          QUATTLEBAUM, CIRCUIT JUDGE

         One of our country's bedrock principles is the freedom of individuals and entities to enter into contracts and rely that their terms will be enforced.[1] Consistent with that principle, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (the "FBI") entered into a contract (the "Prime Contract") with Turner Construction Company ("Turner"), a large general contractor, to build a major FBI facility in West Virginia. Turner then retained various subcontractors to handle particular parts of the project. One of those subcontractors was Modern Mosaic Ltd. ("Modern"), a firm specializing in precast concrete. Turner and Modern entered into a subcontract (the "Subcontract") outlining Modern's role in the construction of the FBI facility.

         During and after Modern's work on this project, disputes between it and Turner arose. After attempts to resolve the disputes failed, Modern sued Turner in the United States District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia.

         Modern asserts four main claims: (1) it incurred increased costs because Turner improperly failed to "field verify" the existing garage; (2) it was improperly required to incur the cost of a full-time engineer or licensed surveyor on site; (3) it incurred increased costs because of the deficient soil remediation work of another subcontractor; and (4) Turner should be estopped from denying Modern's claims because of its improper conduct regarding a mediation between the FBI and Turner.

         Properly applying West Virginia law, [2] the district court rejected all of Modern's claims based on the plain language of the Subcontract. First, it granted Turner summary judgment on the field verification claim. Then, after a bench trial, it ruled in favor of Turner on the remaining claims. We agree with the district court. These two sophisticated businesses entered into a detailed contract spelling out their rights and responsibilities in the construction of the FBI facility. The provisions of that contract directly address the very issues raised in this appeal. They also compel the result reached by the district court. Thus, we affirm.

         I. Field Verification

         The bulk of Modern's contractual responsibilities consisted of fabricating and installing precast concrete panels on an existing parking garage at the FBI facility. Modern prepared the panels in accordance with the dimensions called for in the engineering drawings. During its work, however, Modern discovered that the parking garage was not built to the specified dimensions. As a result, the panels did not fit to the garage. To correct this problem, Modern performed remedial work on the panels costing an additional $975, 072.31.

         Modern argues that Turner was contractually required to field verify that the parking garage was built to the dimensions of the engineering drawings. If done properly, Modern claims, this would have identified the discrepancy between the as-built dimensions and the contractual dimensions before Modern prepared the panels. According to Modern, proper verification would also have prevented the remedial costs it incurred. The district ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.