Storm Water Litigation Team

CPLS P.A. assembles Storm Water Litigation Team to address a growing Florida concern

Living in Florida does bring mild winter weather that attracts many residents each year. With a growing job market, a growing need to develop land to accommodate the housing needs comes with additional challenges.  One of the most common overlooked problems is flooding to make a land unusable due to poorly or negligently designed drainage system that was designed and installed by another developer without consideration of other landowners or future development considerations.  When a parcel of land is not properly graded for storm water drainage, landowner loses the right of quiet enjoyment. What do you do? How do you protect your rights as a property owner and recover from this traumatic damage to your land? 

CPLS, P.A. is the forefront of this issue and has assembled a highly experienced Stormwater Litigation Team to resolve these matters and assist property owners in protecting their rights and recovering compensation to fix the damage from stormwater flooding issues.  Issues from stormwater flooding have become significant enough of a problem that the Florida Bar recently published an article regarding the need to update rules in stormwater management.  

Andrew (Andy) Lannon is an experienced Litigation Attorney and holds 2 board certifications. His clients entrust him to handle even the most complex of Litigation cases.  His experiences as a Land Use and Real Estate Development Attorney make him a powerful advocate for his clients.  He has have worked for all branches of government: federal, state, and local. I clerked for Justice Quince at the Florida Supreme Court to start my career and then went to an AM Law 100 firm in Orlando. I spent 10 years at the Palm Bay City Attorney’s Office, serving as Palm Bay City Attorney for nearly 7 years. He is double board-certified by the Florida Bar in both City, County & Local Government Law and in Business Litigation, one of only 2 attorneys out of the over 100,000 attorneys in Florida with both of these certifications. Finally, he has been recognized in the top 1% of attorneys practicing in Florida every year since 2012 by Florida Trend’s Florida Legal Elite. 

Lisa Hu Barquist has made a career in handling the most complex business litigation matters. As an American Immigrant from China, she has overcome various forms prejudice and has used these experiences to “level the playing field” between parties of unequal strength.   She is passionate getting results that matter even in the most competitive of environments. I am a graduate of Yale and the University of Southern California. I have worked for 5 AMLaw 100 firms and spent 11 years at the United States Attorney’s Office in Miami and in Rochester, New York. I have 3 decades of trial experience. She is also fluent in Mandarin Chinese.

If your property is faced with catastrophic damage from storm water flooding, schedule a consultation with the Storm water litigation team by calling us at (877) 647-7887.

How you can choose the right Attorney to handle your stormwater litigation case

The person must be board certified by the Florida in City, County & Local Government Law and have worked for 5+ years as a City Attorney, County Attorney or as general counsel for a Water Management District. It is recommended that the lawyer be certified in Business Litigation, Civil Litigation or Construction Law, or alternatively, be a demonstrably seasoned trial attorney like my colleague, Lisa Hu Barquist, who was a United States Attorney for 11 years. Finally, the person must have an experienced storm water expert witness on standby to prepare a report detailing who is to blame for your storm water problem and testify to its veracity and accuracy in a Court of law.

Andrew Lannon

Andrew Lannon

Attorney | Stormwater Litigation | Business Litigation

What to do before Land Excavation

What Real Estate Developers need to know about Land Development BEFORE Excavation

 As Florida continues to grow, it is necessary to understand the dynamic environmental impact of issues involving land development. Florida Legislatures have enacted rules to regulate a safer development of Real Estate to prevent irreversible damage to homeowners. Stormwater Litigation Attorney Andrew Lannon is a passionate advocate for property owners in Florida and uses the law to ensure property rights are protected.

Underground Facility Damage Prevention and Safety Act

The Florida Legislature, by and through Chapter 93-240, otherwise known as the Underground Facility Damage Prevention and Safety Act, created a non-profit corporation called Sunshine State One-Call of Florida, Inc. (hereinafter “Sunshine 811”). Sunshine 811’s primary duty is the location and coordination of underground excavation for the express purpose of preventing damage to improvements from excavation. If a contractor fails to comply with sections 556.101 et. seq., Fla. Stat., a rebuttable presumption will arise that the excavator was negligent should any damages to a facility occur. Please note that Sunshine 811 is neither permitted nor required to either locate or mark underground facilities. Any violator of the Act may be assessed a civil penalty ranging from $1,000-$5,000, issued by the authority which issued the permit for the excavation.

Under the Act, not less than two (2) business days before commencing any excavation or demolition, save an excavation beneath the waters of the State of Florida, an excavator shall provide the following information to Sunshine 811:

          Name, street address, and telephone number of individual providing information;

          Name, street address, and telephone number of the person’s employer;

          Name, telephone number and e-mail address for the representative for the excavator in order to facilitate a positive response by the system, if available;

          The county, city or closest city, and the street address or nearest intersection to the location of the excavation or demolition to be performed, including the construction limits thereof;

          Commencement date and anticipated duration of the excavation or demolition;

          The type of work to be done, approximate depth of excavation, and whether machinery will be used for the      operation;

          The person or entity for whom the work is being performed;

          The type of work to be performed;

          The approximate depth of the excavation.

The information is given when you call the statewide toll-free number during business hours (800.432.4770 or 811). Notification received outside of business hours is considered received the next business day.

If a member operator determines that there is a proximity to or conflict with an underground facility of the operator, that operator shall mark and identify by stakes, paint, flags or other suitable means the location of the facility within twenty-four inches (24”) from the outer edge of either side. The Uniform Color Code for Utilities of the A.P.W.A. shall be used for horizontal marking. This marking must occur within two (2) business days of the notification. If the horizontal markings are at any point removed or fall off, they shall be promptly replaced.

Please note that an excavator may not ignore a known underground facility even though it has not been marked. Instead, the demolition shall not proceed until the underground facilities have been marked, located and (if possible) removed. A member operator who certifies that it does not have accurate information is exempt from marking but shall provide the best available information to the excavator. In such an event, the excavator is not liable for damage to an underground facility if the excavation is performed with reasonable care. 

In the event of an emergency, Sunshine 811 must be notified of the excavation within the earliest opportunity. It still may proceed to provide reasonable precautions are taken to protect any underground facilities. An emergency is defined as any condition constituting a clear and present danger to life or property caused by (1) escape of a material or substance transported via underground facility; (2) interruption or vital public service or communication caused by a break or defect in a member operator’s underground facility; or (3) use of highways, streets, or roads owned, operated or maintained by a governmental entity is impaired by an unforeseen occurrence which necessitates immediate repair.

Andrew Lannon

Andrew Lannon

Attorney | Stormwater Litigation | Business Litigation