Not long ago, prior to Covid-19, Guardian’s Surety Group was called in to provide claim, construction and engineering consulting services on behalf of one of our longstanding surety clients. The bond was for a subdivision project located in our nation’s southeast. Subdivision claims require specific expertise. Our client, having experienced the Guardian difference firsthand for decades, knew they could rely on our team’s nearly 30-year track record of mitigating losses and reducing exposures.
ABOUT THE INVESTIGATION
The principal on the project had filed for bankruptcy protection, leaving a total of 350 lots nowhere close to completion and leaving the surety responsible for a 1.2M bond. Subdivision projects such as this one are complex because they involve multiple disciplines – utility installations, completion of roads, off-road improvements, paving, street lighting, and landscaping.
Guardian’s engineering expert did a complete survey of the site and developed a revised, accelerated plan to complete the project. Meeting with the county’s attorney and engineer, Guardian’s Surety Group orchestrated agreement to a plan of action that allowed for those areas of land upon which no work had yet started to revert back to undeveloped acreage. This reduced the amount of work required by approximately 35%.
Additionally, in collaboration with the county’s engineer, we were able to reduce the size of the common areas, thereby reducing the landscaping scope and requirements. Guardian’s construction and engineering claims expert prepared RFPs to contractors in order to relet the work. Due to the rapport Guardian had established with the county’s engineer, Guardian was able to present a list of acceptable bidder-contractors. Delivering to our surety-client’s counsel the necessary information to negotiate an agreement with the county, our team’s experience proved critical in getting the surety’s bond released. Of course, Guardian maintained vigilance by working closely with the completion contractor through completion, including acceptance by the owner.
ABOUT THE RESOLUTION
Guardian’s experience and utilization of the right people mitigated the surety’s loss. The subdivision improvements were completed while limiting the loss to the surety to about one-third the bond value, a figure well below initial in-house estimates.
ABOUT GUARDIAN GROUP, INC.
For nearly 30 years, Guardian Group, Inc. has served sureties and their counsel with a unique combination of complex claims investigations experience and demonstrated construction/engineering expertise. From a single surety claim to a large volume of claims… including complex takeovers and even claims run-offs, the industry continues to rely on Guardian Group for practical, no-nonsense advice and efficient consulting that help you achieve your vision for consummate claim handling. When surety (and construction defect) claims cross your desk, kindly allow us to put our experienced eyes on it. Reach out to Guardian today.