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  1. #1
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Is a HI report a historical documents?

    In Calif it appears that any report or information provided by a expert is a historical documents to real estate.

    What is the law in your state re: historical documents?

    And do you understand just what this may imply?

    This should be fun

    Just how long do you think you should have Extended (Tail) Coverage?

    Best

    Ron

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    Last edited by Ron Bibler; 01-14-2011 at 10:32 AM.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Bibler View Post
    In Calif it appears that any report or information provided by a expert is a historical documents to real estate.

    What is the law in your state re: historical documents?

    And do you understand just what this may imply?

    This should be fun

    Just how long do you think you should have Extended (Tail) Coverage?

    Best

    Ron
    I would think someone would have to prove a/the problem existed when the inspection was done.

    Phoenix AZ Resale Home, Mobile Home, New Home Warranty Inspections. ASHI Certified Inspector #206929 Arizona Certified Inspector # 38440
    www.inspectaz.com

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Some of mine are kind of funny.

    Oh, historical... sorry.

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Bibler View Post
    In Calif it appears that any report or information provided by a expert is a historical documents to real estate.
    The definition of a Home Inspector is in part "a generalist" not an 'expert'.

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
    'Whizzing & pasting & pooting through the day (Ronnie helping Kenny helping burn his poots away!) (FZ)

  5. #5
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Miller View Post
    The definition of a Home Inspector is in part "a generalist" not an 'expert'.
    You Guys are dancing around the issue.

    (Is a HI report a historical documents? in your state.)

    If so you may want to understand the law and just what this implies.

    Best

    Ron


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    I have no idea what the significance of a historical document is in regard to real estate .......or for that matter what a historical real estate document is.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Most documents should be keep for 7 years,at least in Ontario, Canada.I am sure this varies in different areas


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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Tail coverage,should be kept for a least 3 years,after that you are not likely to be sued


  9. #9
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Janssen View Post
    Tail coverage,should be kept for a least 3 years,after that you are not likely to be sued
    I like your words (Not Likely to be Sued)

    In Calif. Any report or other paper describing a property or homes condition becomes a Historical document to that property. Under the Calif. Law a Home Inspection report is a Historical document.
    What this is saying is that there is no Statutes of limitations and because its a Historical document the report is just like public knowledge.

    There are Real Agents that have been sued for deals form 15 or more years ago.

    So my question to you is? Does your state have a Historical document Law on the books? If you do then you need to give that law a good look over.

    Calif. has a 2 years after the discovery law and thats when our Statutes of limitations starts.

    Best

    Ron


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Ron
    What code and section are you citing to establish the 'Hisitorical Document' doctrine? - Specifically as it refers to Home Inspections?

    Also, Murder is the only law (in CA) that is not subject to a Statute of Limitations. Unless there were some sort of exceptional circumstances, basically where the clock stops running because the claim was not established (discovered) until a certain time had passed, well after the original statutes time - legal term 'tolling' - civil actions /torts can not be brought because the limitations have passed. Some actions are one year, most two, some more and so on - it depends on many factors and whether civil or criminal in nature. I seriously doubt any Realtor or any other occupation for that matter, has had a successful judgement against them 15 years later. I suppose, though highly unlikely, that the case could have been within the judicial system for that amount of time - continuance/delay/continuance etc. but even then the original filing would have to have been made within the time established by law, following discovery. Each an every case have filing deadlines and failure to meet those deadlines is an automatic dismissal.

    Your "...two years after discovery law , and that's when our Statute of limitation starts..." is incorrect ...In civil Tort claims (usually what people get sued for), that's typically when it ends. Though it could (rarely) be longer if 'tolling' comes in to play.

    Last edited by Ian Page; 01-23-2011 at 02:19 AM. Reason: Additional comment

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Movement in the home cannot be proved that it was moving at the time or it was not masked (even innocently) at the time of the inspection. A leak in a wall, cracked roofing members, short in electrical, termites found a few years later etc etc etc etc

    Anyone would be hard pressed to be able to say when this happened or that happened.

    I do not believe the home inspector is going to be held liable for anything with the exception of blatant missed item within a year or 2. I think Ron's hysterical document approach of the ever encroaching gov sticking its nose into everything and trying to protect everyone from anything possible and to just about guarantee a multitude of gov workers on the payroll forever is to protect folks from home flippers covering things up and not for the point of actually coming back on home inspectors or termite inspectors.

    I still say this is nothing more than bloated disclosure like most states cover. It just goes a bit further.

    The mountain of paper work accumulated over the decades will be a ridiculous joke and they will need warehouses to store all the filed documents. To expect anyone to maintain mountains of paperwork for all time is a ridiculous notion. Realtors docs on file will fill rooms over the years for every single deal they are involved in for life.

    Welcome to the growing liberal state of California. They just keep on thinking of ways to guarantee there livelihood for all time.

    Last edited by Ted Menelly; 01-23-2011 at 09:21 PM.

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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Bibler View Post
    In Calif it appears that any report or information provided by a expert is a historical documents to real estate.
    Shouldn't the findings be verified first, before they become permanently attached to the property? The inspector could be mistaken, exaggerating, or just plain wrong. Who says he's an expert?
    He could label your house a grow-op because you're starting tomatoes in your basement.

    The onus should be on the next buyer to get an inspection done for himself. Relying on old, second hand info is going to lead to trouble for somebody, just to save a few bucks and make a transaction quicker for the realtor.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  13. #13
    Kevin Luce's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Bibler View Post
    In Calif it appears that any report or information provided by a expert is a historical documents to real estate.

    What is the law in your state re: historical documents?

    And do you understand just what this may imply?

    This should be fun

    Just how long do you think you should have Extended (Tail) Coverage?

    Best

    Ron
    In the State of Indiana, the client has two years from the time of the home inspection to file a lawsuit. After two years, all home inspection reports mean nothing. If I get sued after the two years, the State of Indiana has it clearly written that I or my company cannot be held liable.

    I don't need extended (tail) coverage due to the type of E&O insurance I have.


  14. #14
    Tom Camp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    I burn all my reports to a DVD each year so they are easy to store.


  15. #15
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Camp View Post
    I burn all my reports to a DVD each year so they are easy to store.
    They may start to degrade in 5 years, heard some reports on longevity.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Ron

    California Civil Code 7199. The time for commencement of a legal action for breach of duty arising from a home inspection report shall not exceed four
    years from the date of the inspection.

    However, that's for "breach of duty" and negligence may be another story?
    Historical, I think not due to the fact inspection reports are stating what defects/ conditions where found at the time of inspection, not years later.
    If it's historical why don't I look like I did when I was 25? (yah, I wish)


    Jerry McCarthy
    Building Code/ Construction Consultant

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    "Is a HI report a historical documents?"

    Not sure, but some sure are hysterical documents.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Jerry (M)
    It's actually Ca Business and Professions Code 7199 (not Civil Code). In any event, the Breach of duty - legal definition basically - "The failure to satisfy legal, ethical or moral obligations where another has the right or expectation to demand such satisfaction." Would/could probably include negligence. Certainly, if I were the attorney seeking damages from a HI, (for or failure to identify a detrimental issue during an inspection) it is the legal grounds for the complaint I would use. The statute 7199 - appears more encompassing than a 'negligence' action -and does have a 4 year limitation versus two years on a typical 'negligence' case. The test would be whether a reasonable person - another HI in this case - excercising similar care, also fail to identify the deficiencies. Now, once you know what the deficiency is (the 2nd opinion HI) they are much easier to identify and your 'breach' case is therefore supported.

    In that regard, keeping Inspection Reports (In CA anyway - other States may vary) for at least 5 years and probably longer, would be favorable.


  19. #19
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    IAN, yes, you're right, I misquoted. 7199 is from the CA B&P code.
    In most cases I've been involved with home inspector legal action complaints contain a laundry list something like this:

    Fraudulent non-disclosure
    Failure to disclose material facts
    Fraud
    Intentional & negligent misrepresentation
    Suppression of fact
    Negligence
    Breach of fiduciary duty
    Constructive fraud

    I recommend keeping inspection reports a minimum of 6 years + 1 day for California home inspectors. However, with the low cost of external hard drives and on-line storage facilities what's the rush to destroy them? I also strongly advise keeping any photos or field notes along with the printed report given to the client.

    Jerry McCarthy
    Building Code/ Construction Consultant

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Is a HI report a historical documents?

    Jerry - Yes, I concur. It's a typical shotgun approach to any legal action. Fire enough bullets and something is bound to stick. Furthermore, the more cause of actions you can throw out there the greater likelyhood of a pre-trial settlement. The causes you cited could be something as simple as a HI failing to identify some defect in the installation of a forced air heating unit or Chinese drywall etc.

    All the more reason to have an arbitration clause in the contract. Though I have to agree about keeping all reports for the length of time indicated. I'm not so sure about photos. I know that seems strange but they can also harm possible defenses a HI may have. Sometimes less is more, so to speak. When I take photos I do so to support my report findings - and often for general information about the property for the client and I keep them on file along with the report. However, if any of the photos contain information subject of the cause of action which was not reported on (missed), then the Inspector's own photo(s) could be used against him. Leaving (missing) some defect out of the report is one thing but inadvertently showing the defect in a photo the Inspector took himself, is asking for trouble. It's really a coin toss but something to be borne in mind. My next piece of equipment is a Crystal Ball - just waiting for them to go on sale at HD.

    Last edited by Ian Page; 01-29-2011 at 11:56 PM. Reason: additional comment

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