Robert Judd and Matthew Resch of Wagner, Falconer, & Judd, Ltd., together with the American Subcontractor’s Association’s general counsel Eric B. Travers of Columbus, Ohio, were successful in convincing the Minnesota Supreme Court to take up Safety Signs, LLC v. Westfield Insurance Co., Case Number A12-0370 (Sept. 17, 2012), and to help clarify the law on what constitutes proper notice under the Minnesota Payment Bond Statute. The issues set forth in this appeal profoundly impact subcontractors in the State of Minnesota (and beyond) who rely on payment bonds as security to pay valid claims, for unpaid public work where the general contractor has proven unwilling or unable to pay. This vital security ensures that subcontractors can give their best price for their work to the public.
In supporting the appeal, WFJ was retained by ASA, a national organization representing the interests of approximately 3,000 subcontractor member businesses in the United States, including 108 affiliated member businesses in the State of Minnesota. ASA’s primary focus is the equitable treatment of subcontractors in the construction industry, and it acts in the interest of all subcontractors on public and private construction in the United States by promoting legislative action, and by appearing as amicus curiae in significant legal actions that affect the construction industry at large. ASA will be furthering that mission through filing an amicus brief in this case, and has hired WFJ to work with its general counsel to urge a fair, equitable, and common sense interpretation of the notice requirements applicable to payment bond claims in Minnesota. Written submissions will be provided to the Court in the coming months, with oral argument in 2013. Stay tuned for updates as this case progresses.