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Overview On Errors & Omissions By Florida Design Professionals


Individually, the words themselves carry a negative connotation; taken together in the context of design professionals on Florida construction projects, “errors and omissions” are both frustrating and expensive. Construction industry statistics indicate that up to 70 percent of the total rework costs on projects are linked to the tasks of architects, engineers, and related design professionals. When you consider that construction costs have been steadily growing in recent years, you can see how mistakes by design professionals make a significant financial impact.

As a result, it is important for owners and contractors to understand the basics about errors and omissions by design professionals. You can always count on a Florida construction attorney for assistance with design professional liability issues, though an overview may be helpful.

 Legal Duty of Design Professionals 

Before getting to the impacts of errors and omissions, you should understand how liability arises from the work of architects, engineers, landscape architects, and related parties. In Florida, design professionals are required to apply that level of skill, care, and knowledge typically exercised by someone in the same field. Any deviation from this standard when creating the design will lead to problems when it comes to building it, but the mistake is not on the contractor. Design professionals can be held liable for the costs to put the property owner in the same position as if the mistake had never occurred. 

Comparing Errors and Omissions by Design Professionals 

Though they will both lead to problems down the road, there is a slight distinction between these types of blunders:

  • An error is a miscalculation or improper instruction in the plans and specifications provided to the contractors. The instruction was intentionally included, but it contains inaccuracies.
  • An omission occurs when the specifications fail to include an instruction that is necessary to complete the project and ensure it complies with relevant laws. 

Note that design professionals can even be held liable for mistakes that are beyond the plans they create. For instance, an architect who signs off on someone else’s design might be accountable for errors and omissions by that design professional.

Common Mistakes in Designing Florida Construction Projects 

Generally speaking, errors and omissions are a product of the design’s complexity and the human element of the construction project. Miscommunication is a common theme, and mistakes are more likely when there are numerous parties involved with planning. Frequently, errors and omissions by design professionals involve:

  • Specs on the physical space and infrastructure;
  • State and local building codes;
  • Regulations that apply to mechanical and electrical components;
  • Miscalculations on loads for HVAC equipment;
  • Interior and exterior lighting requirements; and
  • Many other oversights.

A Palm Beach County Design Professional Lawyer Can Explain Liability Issues

A summary of the basics is useful, but it is important to work with an experienced construction attorney when faced with errors and omissions by design professionals. For more information on remedies and legal options, please contact our Florida design professional liability lawyers Linkhorst Law Firm, P.A. We can set up a consultation at our offices to discuss details.

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