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Eight-year battle ends in $6.5 million settlement for Ohio county

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An Ohio county finally ended its long battle with a group of architects, contractors and engineers, receiving an out-of-court settlement of more than $6.5 million.

The Greene County Commissioners, Greene County Council and Greene County Building Corporation had originally sued the United Consulting Engineers, architect firm DLZ Indiana and Weddle Brothers Construction in December 2004 regarding an addition and renovation project involving a courthouse.

The lawsuit arose when the projected five-year process suffered numerous delays and county officials claimed many structural flaws were detected. The Weddle Brothers finally finished the project, after the other companies had been fired for their alleged unprofessional work.

As a result of the delays, as well as the necessary fixes for the flaws, the project was well over budget, which prompted the lawsuit. The project was initially projected to cost $10.5 million, however, the additional expenses totaled more than $6.5 million.

Despite the settlement, as part of the agreement, Greene County must still pay for its legal fees, which amounted to more than $2 million.

The case highlights the importance of having business insurance in place, lest unexpected costs and legal battles arise, which can become expensive quickly, especially for small companies. 

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