Streamlined Case Management for Construction Defect Matters
By Wayne Nitti
Construction defect cases, like toxic torts and products liability claims, tend to be wildly complicated. Whether the underlying claims concern design mistakes, improper products or materials, or failures in the building process, lawsuits alleging construction defects often lasso in large numbers of parties with competing interests and can involve multiple judges, special masters, discovery referees, and mediators. As such, construction defect litigation practically cries out for a secure yet easy-to-use case management system like Case Anywhere. Designed with complex, multi-party disputes in mind, our platform streamlines document service, provides easy-to-use upload and retrieval tools, and facilitates communications among everyone involved—all while achieving across-the-board efficiencies.
As an established online platform frequently deployed in construction defect cases throughout California, Case Anywhere has amassed over a decade of wide-ranging expertise in hosting some of the state’s biggest development disputes. In 2013, for example, we were brought in to provide e-service and professional case management for Wilshire Vermont Housing Partners v. Taisei Construction Corp., et al., a complex litigation involving construction defect, negligence, and breach-of-contract claims relating to a large-scale mixed-use development in Los Angeles. Consistent with our case-based approach, Case Anywhere created a dedicated litigation hub for the standalone matter. We also advised on how to use our targeted construction defect folder structure to upload, serve, and share case-related documents.
As the litigation unfolded over the course of four years, attorneys from more than 75 firms used the system, as did seven judges and their clerks, who regularly communicated with counsel via the case-specific message board. In total, some 500 users tapped into the case file, serving close to 7,000 documents, and transmitting 1,200 messages.
Case Anywhere has hosted hundreds of similar construction defect lawsuits throughout California, and—unlike plug-and-play competitors—we assume a proactive role in every case. The provider of choice for many experienced construction defect counsel, we add value to every proceeding launched on our site. Our proactive, case-specific approach distinguishes us from other providers, and is one of many features that make our case management platform ideal for construction defect litigation:
- A User-Friendly Platform with Responsive Customer Service
- Our software was designed by litigators for litigators. Given legal professionals’ time constraints and their varying comfort levels with new technologies, we understand they prefer easy-to-use software, and in that respect, Case Anywhere delivers. As articulated by one client: “The first time I used Case Anywhere, I could go online and figure it out without any help.”
- Our website provides everything users need to get started, including model e-service orders, inserts for omnibus case management orders, and forms to initiate a new case.
- Our platform is supported by legal and technology professionals who are experienced with litigation and law firm workflow. They work closely with clients from case set up to case closure. “Wonderful customer service,” remarked one of our construction defect clients, echoing a common sentiment. “Efficient, fast and very friendly.”
- Your Partner in Case Management
- When initiating a case on our system, we require an up-to-date service list and set up all law firms. This ensures that service is not dependent on parties registering independently.
- All documents uploaded on the system are categorized by our experienced team of legal professionals, eliminating any need for users to worry about case file organization.
- When service notifications bounce back, we reach out to the intended recipient, apprise them of the service, and maintain a log of the contact. If service of a document through our system is disputed, we provide verification.
- Access to Complete Case Files Anywhere, Anytime
- Once uploaded, documents are immediately available online, and service notifications go out via email within minutes. As a litigation proceeds, our system creates a real-time electronic file cabinet of motions, discovery, orders, and other documents color-coded and organized for easy access. Subcontractor counsel joining a case at a later time, for example, will have access to all previously served documents.
- Insurers, clients, in-house counsel, experts and others can be granted access to the entire case file (or portions thereof) through issuance of additional usernames and passwords.
- We have created a records discovery platform for document productions. Rather than housing these productions separately, the records platform conveniently bundles them into the same case file. Productions are grouped by party name and bates range for quick retrieval.
- To facilitate easy access to transcripts of hearings and depositions, each litigation hub includes a separate Transcript Library. Users who upload these records can restrict viewing rights to particular organizations or select individuals. We can also provide court reporters with links that enable them to add their transcripts directly to the site.
- Customized Setups and Controls
- We recognize that all case types are not alike. The functionality requirements for one proceeding may be different than another. Accordingly, on Case Anywhere, features, folder structures, message groups, and user permissions can all be tailored according to users’ preferences and needs. Alternatively, users can choose default structures and permission types.
- Individual users control access to their uploaded records and can restrict documents to select organizations or individuals. Notification options can also be modified on a case-by-case basis.
- If and when case structures change or special circumstances arise, Case Anywhere’s professionals assist clients in modifying the platform to address their new requirements.
If you’re a member of the construction defect bar and not already using our service, I hope you’ll request a demonstration. We can set up cases in any jurisdiction and regularly launch new matters within twenty-four hours of submission. Our experienced team of professional case managers knows the ropes in your business, and when it comes to fulfilling client expectations, we’ve set the bar high.