Farnworth v. Rossetto

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Tort Law
  • Date Filed: 04-26-2017
  • Case #: A158913
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Sercombe, J. for the Court; Hadlock, J.; Tookey, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

A municipality does not assume any duty that is not expressly stated in its statutes. Indian Creek Development Co. v. City of Hood River, 203 Or App 231, 237-239, rev den, 340 OR 158 (2006).

Plaintiff (Homeowner) appealed the trial court’s motion for summary judgment in favor of Defendant City of Medford (City).   Homeowner assigned error to the trial court’s determination that the building code does not establish a private right of action in favor of a homeowner against a municipality for negligent failure to enforce its provisions.  On appeal, Homeowner argued the city had a statutory obligation to enforce the building code, which gave rise to a duty to inspect the building for code violations and weather barriers.  In response, City argued that it was not obligated under the building code to inspect for the builder’s compliance with its provisions generally, and had no duty to inspect for any weather barrier.  A municipality does not assume any duty that is not expressly stated in its statutes.  Indian Creek Development Co. v. City of Hood River, 203 Or. App. 231, 237-239, 125 P.3d 50 (2005), rev den, 340 OR. 158 (2006).  The court held that because the building code does not require an inspection for a weather barrier, and does not mandate general inspections for violations, the city had no affirmative duty to inspect for a weather barrier.  Therefore, Homeowner did not have a claim for negligence.  Affirmed.

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