August 2016

Monique Cardenas, of the firm's Miami office, will be speaking on a telephone conference on Thursday, August 25, 2016 at 12 noon. During the call Ms. Cardenas will discuss crucial information regarding the recently enacted green building Ordinance in the City of Miami Beach. The new Ordinance establishes specific requirements for green building certification within the City, as well as a sustainability fee for owners and developers who fail to meet the new minimum standards of sustainability. See the attached invitation for dial in information.

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Neal Sklar, a partner in the firm's Miami office, was quoted as an expert source in a story entitled ‘Miami-Dade MPO Gives Beach Corridor project Priority 1 Status" that was published in the Miami Today on August 11, 2016. Mr. Sklar commented on a public-private partnership being the model to finance the proposed Miami Beach Corridor light rail project and the importance of creating a proposal and involving the private sector for ideas.

Melinda S. Gentile, a partner in the firm's Miami office, was featured in the August 8, 2016 issue of the Daily Business Review in the Profiles in Law section. The article described Ms. Gentile’s successful career in construction law which she thoroughly enjoys because of its many aspects including contract law, administrative law, constitutional law and environmental issues. She grew up in Kansas City and came to South Florida for her college education. Ms. Gentile is Florida Board Certified in Construction law and holds three degrees – a JD, an MS and a BA.

Peckar & Abramson, P.C. (P&A) is pleased to announce that Jerry P. Brodsky, a partner in the firm's Miami office and Director of the firm’s Latin American Practice Group, has successfully taken the lead on developing a first-of-its-kind Dispute Board Program for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, being held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Mr. Brodsky, who was appointed in 2014 as the Dispute Board Program Manager by the Rio 2016 Olympic Organizing Committee, and Brazilian construction attorney Victor Madeira, led a team of U.S. and Latin American attorneys in the development of the program, which provides dispute board resolution services for the approximately fifty (50) contracts and service agreements for non-permanent structures and services for the 2016 Games. The team led by Mr. Brodsky and Mr. Madeira is comprised of members of the Dispute Board Review Foundation (DRBF), as well as a group of highly qualified Latin American construction law attorneys.

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Adam Handfinger, a partner in the firm's Miami office, was quoted in a story by Law360 on August 2, 2016 about a breaking news appellate matter affecting the construction industry entitled ‘11th Circuit Seeks Florida Justices' Input On Defect Notice Law’.

The 11th Circuit asked Florida's highest court to weigh in on an issue of first impression regarding whether a construction defect claim notice constitutes a suit triggering an insurer's defense obligations under a commercial general liability insurance policy.

In a published opinion, a three-judge appellate panel said that the language in building contractor Altman Contractors Inc.'s CGL policies with Crum & Forster Specialty Insurance Co. doesn't clearly indicate whether a notice of a construction defect issued under Chapter 558 of the Florida Statutes is a suit triggering the insurer's duty to defend. As a result, the panel, sought the Florida Supreme Court's input on the issue.

Mr. Handfinger said he looks forward to seeing how the Florida high court will address the issue. "At the end of the day, the policy says what it says, and if the insurers had wanted to limit defense, they could have done so," Handfinger said. "Any ambiguities have to be construed in favor of the insured. If there is any question about what a 'suit' means under the policy, all inferences have to be drawn in the insured's favor."