James Souza (Subcontractor): [EXTRAPOLATION]
Trial counsel on theis matter was James Souza. This was a construction defect action involving 50 single family homes in San Diego. Plaintiffs’ were represented by Bill Naumann and Ralph Peters of Naumann & Levine. Developer was represented by Bob Carlson of Koller, Nebeker, Carlson & Haluck. Kennedy & Souza was retained to represent Coffman Enterprise which performed lath and plaster work at all 50 homes. Attorney Rick Gloger was assigned the file and performed all work on the file up to trial when attorney James Souza took over to try the case.
On the eve of trial the Plaintiffs settled with Developer and all of the subcontractors with the exception of the framer, (window installer) Coffman Enterprises (stucco sub) and the window manufacturer. The last demand made to Coffman by Plaintiffs prior to trial was $150,000 ($3,000 per home for each of the 50 homes). The last offer made on behalf of Coffman Plastering was $50,000 (1,000 per home).
During a 402A hearing, Mr. Souza convinced the court, Judge Vargas in Department 63 in the San Diego Superior Court, that Plaintiffs’ experts lacked foundation to extrapolate repairs to 55% of the windows in the case. Judge Vargas ruled no evidence or argument could be offered by Plaintiffs to repair any of the subject windows which reduced Plaintiffs’ cost of repair related to issues implicating Coffman Enterprises from $400,000 to $180,000. The Judge asked for further briefing regarding whether or not Plaintiffs’ experts should be allowed to extrapolate at all. After receiving a copy of Coffman’s brief, Plaintiffs settled with Coffman Plastering for $50,000 contingent upon a Good Faith Determination which was contested by both the framer and window manufacturer. The Good Faith Motion was granted.