This article was inspired by the question, Should Moisture testing of concrete slabs be the job of installers or General Contractors? By, B.T Burton on the Flooring Installers Group
Ultimately in our shift the blame world for responsibility, it is thought well of, to find reasons why everyone down the chain of hire or up the chain of supply, is to take responsibility for problems in building product applications. Manufacturers and uninformed end users, who do not want to bear the burden of responsibility for the making and purchasing of market driven products, end up basking in this bantering and as long as someone else pays, be it the right party or not, have enjoyed believing this is a best outcome deal.
The real responsibility needs to be laid with the money. He/she/they or whatever organization sets in motion a build or project of any kind is ultimately the responsible party for all good or bad involved. If liability for negligence is to be of issue, our countries have courts and expert witnesses to help resolve the real responsibility for everyone involved. Do not a lot of these issues end up being litigated or mediated by the money person/persons or organization anyway?
Negligence starts with the one initiating the project, uninformed or not, (especially the uninformed or taker informed, advantage seeker) expecting to reap only the good and expecting someone else to absorb the results of their lack of knowledge, oversight or oversight with “ill intent”, to keep aware of the changes or needs of the project without “user ill intent”, for a reasonably successful outcome.
Informed clients, with “good will intent” are usually on top of things, meaning, they do their best to make informed responsible involved decisions and have better results, eliminating issues that result in industry waste of time blame games.
On another note, all good trades need to be in the know and be honest, so as to avoid being the negligent party and if duly accredited in their trade, may very well be used as an expert witness.
If the general contractor, designer, agent, who should be in the know and honest, or anyone else says all is good and the trade believes differently, then they need to move on. No money is made accepting a risk, that in our industry at present due to debate, the real party is not responsible, namely, the money person/persons or organization.
Therefore, if a trade takes the job on, knowing the risks, written or not, they should be aware that the end result may be sheer, “Wow we fluked that one and got away with it” or “Holy crap, we’re screwed,” should they be taken to task by the responsible party, who will be using expert witnesses to prove their point.
The responsible, money person/persons or organization will realize they need a good case, as if it isn’t, the responsibility for the litigation costs could very well be theirs too.