Subcontractor sued for defective work and allegedly stealing property after contract termination

By Louisiana Record reports | May 29, 2014

GRETNA – A construction company is suing a subcontractor for alleged defective work on two construction projects.

Bertel Construction LLC filed suit against New Beginnings Enterprises and J. Fernando Arriola in the 24th Judicial District Court on May 2.

Bertel Construction asserts it entered into a contract with New Beginnings Enterprises and Arriola on Oct. 23, 2013 who were to provide services as subcontractor on a residential dwelling located at 540 Third St. in New Orleans for a price of $195,000 to be completed within 120 days. The plaintiff alleges that after the first contract was under way it entered into a second contract with the defendant on Dec. 11, 2013 to build a multi-family unit located at 1339-14 Constance St. in New Orleans for the cost of $232,000. Bertel Construction claims that in January 2014 it began to notice several construction defects in both properties caused by New Beginnings Enterprises and Arriola that was not in compliance with plans and specifications.

The plaintiff asserts that due to the defects produced by the defendants’ allegedly non-conforming work it terminated both subcontracts. Following the termination of the contracts Bertel Construction alleges New Beginnings Enterprises and Arriola reentered the properties and removed window frames and other property. The plaintiff claims it paid the defendants $209,500 for their work on the projects, which it is now requesting be returned.

The defendant is accused of providing defective labor and materials, failing to properly supervise construction on the properties, failing to obtain inspections required under building codes, failing to construct dwellings in accordance with plans and specifications and failing to perform agreements in a workmanlike manner.

Damages in the amount of $209,500 are sought by the plaintiffs as well as additional sums for defective and incomplete work, lost profits, consequential damages and attorney’s fees.

Bertel Construction is represented by Stephanie Dovalina of New Orleans-based Galloway Johnson Tompkins Burr & Smith APLC.

The case has been assigned to Division J Judge Stephen C. Grefer.

Case no. 738-052.

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