Firm Wins Pro Bono Construction Case

By Weisbart Springer Hayes

The trial team of Matt C. Wood and Mia A. Storm recently won a significant judgment in Austin for a pro bono client in a trial involving the defective and incomplete construction of a house.

In 2014, the firm’s client paid the defendant, a builder, virtually all of her life savings to construct a small home in Manor, Texas for her and her three children.  Despite having been paid the full contract price, the builder constructed little more than a shell and failed to complete the house.  Inspections later revealed that even the shell was defective and posed a safety hazard to future occupants.

On June 12, 2015, after a two-day trial in Travis County District Court before Judge Tim Sulak, judgment was rendered in favor of the firm’s client for almost $140,000, including economic damages to repair and complete the house, mental anguish damages, and exemplary damages under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act.  The award of exemplary damages was based on the court’s finding that the builder had knowingly violated the DTPA.

“It was a great privilege to help our client achieve justice in the courtroom, especially when the stakes were high and the client wouldn’t otherwise have had access to the legal system,” said lead trial lawyer Matt Wood.

Wood recently received the 2015 Judge Suzanne Covington Pro Bono Service Award, which is awarded annually by Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas to its top attorney volunteers.

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