Calloway v. City of Reno – Case Brief Summary (Nevada)

In Calloway v. City of Reno (Nev. 2000) 116 Nev. 250, 993 P.2d 1259, the issue arose in the factual context of allegedly defective roofing, framing, siding, plumbing and heating and air conditioning installed in a number of townhomes.

The homeowners' negligence and strict liability claims against the framing subcontractors were dismissed, and such dismissals were affirmed on appeal.

The appellate court concluded that the claims were barred by the economic loss doctrine and that townhomes were not products for purposes of strict liability. ( Id. 993 P.2d at p. 1273.)

The Court noted:

"The more reasoned method of analyzing the economic loss doctrine is to examine the relevant policies in order to ascertain the proper boundary between the distinct civil law duties that exist separately in contract and tort. Permitting tort recovery for economic losses from construction defects would create a general, societally imposed duty on the part of builders and developers to avoid such losses. These losses are not properly addressed by tort law, which has as its underlying policy the promotion of safety. Instead, such harm is paradigmatically addressed by the policies underlying contract law--to enforce standards of quality as defined by the parties' contractual relationships." ( Calloway, supra, 993 P.2d at p. 1266, fn. 3.)