Klein & Wilson

Construction defect litigation ongoing involving Rihanna's home

Before a house is purchased, there is usually an inspection to locate any potential problems for the homebuyer. The buyer and seller usually work out who will pay for the necessary repairs or upgrades, or the buyer may decide not to purchase the home. The inspection process is an important part of buying a house.

Singer Rhianna purchased a home in Beverly Hills, California, in 2009. She hired a firm, LaRocca Inspection Associates, to do the inspection and inform her of repairs that may be needed. After the purchase of the home was completed, Rhianna says there were many problems with leaks and other water-related problems during 2009-2010. One of the specific problems she reports is that the hardwood floors had "water seepage problems."

Rihanna, whose legal name is Robyn Fenty, filed a lawsuit against the property inspection company, alleging breach of contract, negligence and fraud for not ensuring that the water problems were taken care of.

LaRocca maintains that Rihanna did not advise them of any problems and alleges breach of contract in a countersuit. If they had been aware of the problems, the company says that another inspection could have been done to identify the problems. Several defendants were named in that countersuit, including Rhianna's real estate agent's company and the previous owner of the residence.

Los Angeles Superior Court judge hearing the case recently ordered that the home inspection company depose Rhianna. LaRocca asked the judge to order Rhianna to pay $7,500 for costs incurred while trying to get a deposition completed by the singer. Her attorney, though, says that there were numerous times that Rhianna agreed to a deposition.

Many might think that construction litigation only concerns the building of new homes and businesses, but there can be problems at any time with a property. It is up to business law attorneys to determine if compensation can be sought for such problems.

beverlyhills.patch.com, "Judge Orders Lawyers in Rihanna Beverly Hills Home Defect Case to Meet" Matthew Sanderson, Dec. 12, 2013

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