The Gulf Opportunity Zone Act of 2005 (the “Act”) added several new sections to the Internal Revenue Code that provide certain tax benefits for affected hurricane disaster areas. Section 1400N(a) authorized the issuance of Qualified Private Activity Bonds (“Qualified Bonds”) to finance the construction and rehabilitation of residential and nonresidential property located in the Gulf

The Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeals has issued the first Appellate Court decision dealing with the Louisiana New Home Warranty Act and its application to Chinese Drywall claims in the case of Jennifer L. Caminita, wife of/and Frank L. Caminita v. Regina, wife of/and Barney Core, Smith and Core, Inc., et al., State of

On June 1, 2011, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) issued a notice to Gulf of Mexico Outer Continental Shelf Region (GOMR) lease and pipeline right-of-way (ROW) holders on reporting hurricane and tropical storm effects. Specifically, the recent notice, designated NTL No. 2011-G01(1), requires four reports, as appropriate:

  • Evacuation

On September 30, 2010, the Internal Revenue Service issued guidance providing relief to homeowners who have suffered property losses due to the effects of certain imported drywall installed in homes between 2001 and 2009.  In particular, the IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2010-36 which enables affected taxpayers to treat damages from corrosive drywall as a casualty loss and provides a ”safe harbor” formula for determining the amount of the loss.
Continue Reading IRS Issues Safeharbor Relief for Those Impacted by “Chinese Drywall”

Judges in East Baton Rouge and St. Tammany Parish have issued two of the earliest rulings on the impact of the Louisiana New Home Warranty Act on claims by homeowners against contractors for damages related to Chinese Drywall. Both state district court judges have found that the Louisiana New Home Warranty Act is the exclusive

By the Admiralty and Maritime Team

In Solana v. GSF Development Driller I, et al., 587 F.3d 266 (5th Cir. 2009), the United States Fifth Circuit reiterated the longstanding rule that generally, a seaman belonging to a vessel in peril cannot claim a salvage compensation for saving his vessel.

The facts in Solana are quite interesting.  As Hurricane Katrina approached the Gulf Coast, Global Santa Fe (GSF) evacuated its jack-up and anchored rigs in the Gulf of Mexico, which included the Development Driller I (DDI), a $350 million dollar semi-submersible drilling rig. The DDI’s power was shut off and its crew was evacuated.  Solana, a 20 year GSF employee and Offshore Installation Manager (OIM) of the DDI, and Lally, a ballast control operator and senior dynamic positioning operator, were among those employees who were evacuated from the rig.Continue Reading United States Fifth Circuit Reiterates Rule That Crew Members Are Not Entitled to a Salvage Award for Assistance Rendered to Their Own Vessel

Throughout 2004–2007 a housing boom along with a series of hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico combined to create a shortage of drywall in the United States.  Needing drywall to build the homes that were much in demand, suppliers turned abroad. Chinese manufacturers stepped in, providing cheap and readily available material.  This influx of Chinese drywall was concentrated in Florida, Louisiana, and Mississippi; the states most affected by Hurricanes Wilma, Katrina, and Rita.  Since 2006, it has been estimated by some sources that more than 550 million pounds of drywall have been imported from China.  There are reports that some 100,000 homes could possibly be affected nationwide. Continue Reading What does the Transfer of Chinese Drywall Cases by the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation Mean?

The Louisiana Legislature has adopted House Concurrent Resolution No. 185, authored by Representative Tim Burns.  The resolution urges and requests that the Department of Health and Hospitals and the Deptartment of Insurance, in consultation with the Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors, investigate the health risks associated with living in homes that contain drywall imported

June marks the beginning of Hurricane Season and should serve as a reminder to review your personal and business property insurance coverage. The effect of recent Hurricanes on the Gulf Coast generally and Louisiana specifically have been significant with respect to both damages and the insurance covering those damages.
Continue Reading Insurance and Hurricanes

In New Investment Properties, L.L.C. v. ABC Company, et al, 2007 W.L. 4305464 (4TH Cir. 2007), the Court of Appeals addressed the range of personal jurisdiction. Like that of a shepherd’s crook, the court exercised personal jurisdiction over a non-resident defendant. Plaintiffs, New Investment Properties, L.LC. and Creek Apartments Team, L.L.C. (“Creek Apartments) are both Louisiana corporations and the owners of two apartment complexes in New Orleans. Defendant, R. P. Beckendorf, is a California corporation with its principal place of business in Los Angeles. It is an independent insurance agency which obtained flood and wind policies for an apartment complex. The policies were delivered to the Champion Group, Inc., which is a California corporation with its principal place of business in Los Angeles.   The two managers of the plaintiffs are both residents of California, who are also managers of the Champion Group in California.
Continue Reading Where You May Be Doing Business – The Personal Jurisdiction Snare