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#185858 04/01/09 09:38 PM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 853
L
leland Offline OP
Member
This past winter a friend plowed (snow) a lot for a man.
Convenience store, This dope clipped a 2 inch conduit housing verizon wires. Only broke the LB at the entrance point.
Unfortunately this verizon pipe connected to the store also carried wires for the bank ATM located adjacent.
No loss of lines resulted.

So,of course we need a quick responce,no lines were lost,But verizon needed new pipe for new cables to restore security.
new Conduit was installed back in November (by me).

Fast forward:
My Pal sues the store for $1500 for snow removal money. Owner responds with $9000 counter for damages (my Pal paid me for the install)

Store owner now makes a stink that I'm not licensed (web search,under my name on the card,not lic #).
(BTW, I'm lic,insured and registerd)

My response: I ran a 2"x20' piece of sc. 80 PVC,1, 90 and 2 LBs'.
No license needed.

Right or wrong?

leland #185863 04/01/09 11:42 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,370
Likes: 1
Cat Servant
Member
It's time to separate issues .... and perhaps chat with an attorney. It mayalso be time to call the shopkeepers' bluff, and let the judge decide.

First, you say you were paid. I'd say this removes you from the fight. What remains is a dispute between your friend and the shopkeeper.

If your friend is required to have a license to plow snow, he may not be able to collect unless he has that license. Even without the license, he is still liable for any damages he may have caused.

The shopkeeper can sue only for damages; your local laws will define what sorts of damages he may ask for. Chances are, he can ask only for actual losses- not imaginary 'consequential' losses. If, as you say, no service was lost, then the shopkeeper has no losses on which to ask for damages.

Since a suit has been filed, it's now up to the court to decide. The court will 'determine' the facts of the case, and decide accordingly. I say ... have some faith in the system; Judges don't like spurious claims, and are not idiots. I suspect the shopkeeper never intended to pay for the work, and is trying to bully his way through.

You can help by testifying as to what you saw, and repaired. Youmight also direct your friend to whatever standards youcan find that might have required bollards, or other protection,for that pipe. A little detail like that just might give the judge the hook he needs to hang the shopkeeper.

renosteinke #185876 04/02/09 12:46 PM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 745
E
Member
Yep, I must agree. At the very most, you would be summoned to provide your testimony as a witness as to what really happened. The judge isn't going to allow for that kind of suit. I'd suggest that your buddy files a claim with his liability insurance carrier, have them pay for a lawyer to defend him and for your time as a witness if you are needed.

I had a case once where we caused about $10K in damage with a cable trencher to some unmarked and unknown lighting feeders at a stadium complex. My insurance company spent more than that in legal fees, etc. and won the case. They then counter-sued the GC on the job and won that case as well. Even I didn't think that they should go to such an extreme, but they said that the only way that they can curb these frivolous suits is to hit them with a heavy 1-2 punch.


---Ed---

"But the guy at Home Depot said it would work."
leland #185877 04/02/09 04:01 PM
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 763
K
Member
Originally Posted by leland
My response: I ran a 2"x20' piece of sc. 80 PVC,1, 90 and 2 LBs'. No license needed.


I'm wondering if to the letter of the law, you might need some form of a license in MA, if any of the wires in the conduit will carry electricity for ATM security purposes.
Granted it's low voltage and possibly not even connected to the building's security system, but might still technically be considered as carrying electricity for security system purposes.

Chapter 141: Section 1A, Licensure requirements; exceptions.
Section 1A. No person, firm or corporation shall enter into, engage in, or work at the business or occupation of installing wires, conduits, apparatus, devices, fixtures, or other appliances for carrying or using electricity for light, heat, power, fire warning or security system purposes, unless such person, firm or corporation shall be licensed by the state board of examiners of electricians in accordance with this chapter… blah, blah, blah….

KJay #185879 04/02/09 05:11 PM
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 853
L
leland Offline OP
Member
K-, So I have a lic.,did not touch a single conductor.
Just ran a new conduit next to the old and supported the old to the new with bungy cords,until Verizon could repair.

I'm not loosing sleep over it. I have no clue what the wires do.

leland #185880 04/02/09 06:08 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,370
Likes: 1
Cat Servant
Member
As I referred to before ... judges are not stupid. The fact that you have ANY license - even if it might be argued that you did not quite have the exact correct license - is often enough to stop most 'unlicensed' claims right there.

renosteinke #185882 04/02/09 07:47 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 402
J
Member
Maybe Verizon charged him the $9000 for their part of the repair.

renosteinke #185883 04/02/09 07:48 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 7,333
Likes: 7
Member
Le:
Here in NJ you do not need a lic to put in conduit...but a permit & inspection is required.

Reno made good points; take the advice IMHO


John

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