Defendant seeks oral deposition in $3M breach of contract case

David Yates Feb. 23, 2012, 8:48am

A notice of intention to take oral deposition was recently filed in a suit brought by J.C. Cantera Homes, which seeks nearly $3 million in damages.

Alleging it was forced to replace every nail in more than 100 homes, Cantera filed a lawsuit March 1, 2011, in Jefferson County District Court against Aaron Jaramillo; Zulema Escobedo, doing business as Escobedo's Insurance Co.; and Farmers Insurance.

Court records show that Escobedo filed its notice on Feb. 22, seeking the deposition of representatives from J.C. Cantera Homes.

Among other matters, Escobedo is seeking information regarding the claim and the company's policies and procedures regarding insurance coverage of subcontractors.

Cantera hired Jaramillo to provide framing work of homes it was building in Jefferson County, according to the suit. As part of its contract, Jaramillo agreed to provide liability insurance coverage, which it obtained through Escobedo. In turn, Escobedo secured a commercial liability policy through Farmers, the suit states.

The lawsuit alleges that a windstorm engineer discovered rusted nails used in the wall sheathing and roof decking. This led Cantera to discover that Jaramillo did not use nails that were in accordance with applicable building codes, according to the complaint.

"Since the Defendant Jaramillo did not use the correct nails the Plaintiff is now required by the Texas Department of Insurance to take off all the roof decking and wall sheathing on all the homes involved and redo all the roofing and siding with galvanized nails," the suit states. "This has to be done and is being done to over 100 homes."

In addition to the $700,000 in actual damages and the $2.1 million in exemplary damages it seeks, Cantera wants the court to award it post-judgment interest at the highest legal rate, attorney's fees, costs and other relief to which it may be entitled.

Kenneth D. Baugh of Houston represents Cantera.

Houston attorney Ray Edwards of Gann & Edwards represents Zulema Escobedo.

Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd District Court, is assigned to the case.

Case No. E189-481

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