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If you are planning on buying a pool and signing on the contractor’s dotted line – think again!  You can instantly find yourself in the deep end and lose your entire investment not to mention unwanted frustration. 

It is a sad state of affairs that the Moster Law Firm has a practice area devoted to representing clients who have been defrauded by unscrupulous pool contractors.  Here are a few pointers to consider prepared by experienced pool defect attorneys: 

1. Avoid small pool contractors – 

If you are dealing with a small and undercapitalized pool contractor, you will be between a legal rock and a hard place if things go bad.  Although you may have a great claim, it is worthless if you can’t collect.  That’s the reality of many of these cases.  Regardless of the perceived benefits of a smaller pool contractor or the sales pitch – stay away from small companies and go with a larger outfit.  The main advantage is that if you hire a lawyer and win in litigation, you will likely get paid.  This is critical advice! 

2. Have a pool defect attorney review the contract-  

This may seem unnecessary, but it is critical.  I would say that 99% of the time, my clients have no idea what they have signed as they ignore the “legalese” to just get the pool work started. Also, when in the showroom, the client is excited about the pool and often avoids the contract details.  This is a critical mistake as there are numerous provisions which will destroy your legal rights.  Typical pool contract clauses take away your right to recover damages, prevent the filing of a lawsuit in a public court, and even provide that the contractor is not responsible for natural causes which could lead to defects in pool construction.  For example, elevation issues are a common problem where a pool is not constructed properly to account for uneven terrain.  I have seen pools collapse in these situations. This happens more frequently than you can imagine.  It is inexpensive for an attorney to review a pool contract and advise.  Do it! 

 3. The defect is blamed on suppliers –  

This is the latest nonsense we have encountered where a high dollar pool is constructed but malfunctions because a supplier has used defective materials in other pools across the country.  The contractor denies liability because they blame a third party.  They then ask the purchaser to be “patient” as they are trying to work it out.  This is totally false as a problem with a subcontractor is not a defense to the claim against the contractor.  Don’t fall for it. 

4. The pool builder says the defect is just “wear and tear” or “minor” – 

Don’t fall for this either as it happens frequently.  The pool builder attempts to apply putty or some cosmetic solution to an underlying design or construction defect.  What this does is lull you into thinking everything is fine while the statute of limitations expires on your ability to bring a lawsuit. 

5. The pool builder says the warranty doesn’t cover the problem – 

Very common and poppycock!  The warranties are fraudulent and set up to deny coverage.  Typically, the builder or warranty company will bring in their own structural engineer to rubber stamp the false conclusion that everything is fine.  This happens almost 100% of the time in my experience.  Also keep in mind that the legal claims arise from the contract in addition to the warranty.  If the warranty does not cover the problem, the contract should. 

Bottom line – Pool contractors are not your friends and we have represented clients across the state with serious defects and issues. Please remember these points so you don’t end up in the deep end! 

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