Here's a good one for you.....

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by tthomass, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Messages: 3,498

    So, who has something in their contract about customers staying off the "construction" site. Then again, how can you keep them off their property. Additionally, not a one of us meets all OSHA standards that a lawyer would have a thrill with due to injury.

    I have been building a 2nd patio while my main guy was building another. This was kind of my pet project, slow paced.........for a very nice 82yr old lady.

    I had told her to stay off, concerned with her falling. Well yesterday she did, and I caught her. Three minutes later I didn't and onto the concrete she went. To add to it she was bleeding pretty good from a cut behind her head and she ended up breaking her wrist. The bleeding stopped, I held her head and was talking to her. Everything was okay, the bleeding stopped. She was shaken up but calm and calling herself "stupid". Helped her up off the concrete, made sure she was okay, not dizzy, felt fine etc. She went inside and cleaned herself up and I checked on her a few times minutes following. Later went to the doctor, no stitches but cast on her wrist. Sore and beat'n up a bit but okay.

    I've actually called a meeting with a few of the reputable contractors around me through a supplier of mine to review blank contracts for events such as this and others so to best prepare ourselves for things that we may no have thought of. I've thought of some sort of liability release if a 25' perimeter of my job site is broken, I'm not liable. Again, a lawyer would tear that to hell with OSHA.

    I spoke with my insurance lady and her point of view is:

    -Customer was on her property, her insurance
    -The stone she tripped over she considers her property (though I later remembered my contract states that all materials are property of RWF until paid for in full)
    -Medicare etc

    So...............good news, my customer is okay though she took a nasty fall that was far less then pleasant to see. I've had people die from car wrecks in my brother's arms in front of me that didn't bother me anything like watching her fall, hit and bleed.......reminding me of my Grandma I guess.

    Its a tough position to be in and an awkward one to handle because it seems as though no real way to protect yourself. Everything is going to be okay but thought I'd share.
  2. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,622

    When I had my house built, the builder's contract stated that the client could not come on the property until after 5 pm (or something like that). I assume they have such a clause for liability purposes.

    I have been told that Ryan Homes has some sort of clause as well. I can't remember for sure, but I could swear that Ryan's contracts stated the client can't enter the home until it's COMPLETED! Of course people will go inside during construction, Ryan knows this, but I believe they have such a clause just to cover theirselves.

    Not a bad idea for the type of work we do. But how would we define the work zone? We usually have a staging area, then a path going from the road or driveway (in most cases), the actual work site, as well as tools, materials, equipment, etc., around the worksite. I always worry about people tripping over rocks (in the disturbed soil), or tripping over tools and materials.

  3. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,622

    If not already, how long do you think till this topic is addressed at the "premier hardscape forum"??

  4. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,260

    Todd your "all material is property of RWF till paid in full" will not hold up in court. Once its installed on the clients property its theres.

    If someone screws you over the last payment on a project and you go tear up the patio and start loading it in your truck, you very well may spend the night in jail.
  5. tthomass

    tthomass LawnSite Gold Member
    from N. VA
    Messages: 3,498

    Its more so for plants but I wouldn't put it past myself on a patio if they were all out screwing me. I don't know about NJ but I've had my contract reviewed by a lawyer and the only issue we had with that particular line item was when I was hired by a GC for work at a 3rd party. The GC screwed me but because I wasn't contracted with the 3rd party, but rather the GC, I could not reclaim the plants without giving the 3rd party the opportunity to pursue me for trespassing.

    Enough of that, off topic.
  6. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    Good topic Todd.
    One I always worry about, especially with little kids and older people. They aere the nosiest. I don't have a clause in my contract for this.

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