How long does a person have to sue a builder?

On Behalf of | Jan 9, 2021 | Construction Litigation |

The building or buying of a home or structure on commercial property is not a small thing. There is a lot involved and a significant sum of money spent. Louisiana residents trust builders to do right by them, but unfortunately, that does not always happen. Years down the line, issues may arise with the property that can be a financial drain on the owner. How long does a person have to sue a builder for damages after a construction project has been completed?

Every state has statutes of limitations for various types of legal claims. In Louisiana, construction-related legal claims need to be made anywhere from one to 10 years after project completion. How long one has ultimately depends on the issue at hand.

According to current state statutes, a person has 10 years to file claims over contract issues and one year to file claims for torts — wrongful acts committed by the builder, contractors or architects. Louisiana also has something called the statute of repose, which gives property owners five to 10 years to file lawsuits over defects. Again, how much time one has to file suit comes down to the specifics of their case. The sooner one acts, the better. Once the statute of limitations and the statute of repose run out, one’s ability to seek damages through legal means will be lost.

When building or purchasing a property in Louisiana, paying to have a private inspection done on the completed project is one of the best ways one can ensure everything is up to code and issues that are apparent at the time can be fixed. If problems with the property arise later, taking the issues directly to the builder as soon as possible is wise. If the builder refuses to make things right, one may pursue litigation to resolve the situation. A construction law attorney can help one determine if litigation is an option and an appropriate course of action.