Shell v. Schollander Companies, Inc.

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Tort Law
  • Date Filed: 09-24-2014
  • Case #: A150509
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Schuman, S.J. for the Court; Duncan, P.J.; & Wollheim, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

This Court previously concluded that ORS 12.135 “applies to any action, 'in contract, tort, or otherwise,' regardless of the type of damages sought, so long as the action arises out of the specified construction-related circumstances.” The Court further concludes that these claims need to arise out of a construction contract.

Shell appealed a motion for summary judgment that was granted to The Schollander Companies, Inc. alleging that the trial court erred by using ORS 12.115 as the governing statute rather than ORS 12.135 for Shell's negligence claim. Both statutes contain a ten year statute of limitations, but the time period in which they begin is distinct in that the time begins accruing with "the act or omissions complained of" in ORS 12.115 and "substantial completion" in ORS 12.135. This dispute arose from a negligence claim filed right around the ten year statute of limitations. The Court stated that ORS 12.135 applies to actions commenced due to construction contracts, and that while there were still certain construction aspects relating to the interior of the house which were outlined in the addenda to the purchase agreement, they did not pertain to the outside work that was the core of the negligence claim. Shell argued that even if her complaint did not fall within ORS 12.135, her action was still within the statute of limitations of ORS 12.115. The Court concluded that the outer shell of the house was completed outside the ten year statute of limitations; accordingly, ORS 12.115 bars the action. Affirmed.

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