HPTY Secures Supreme Court Victory in Arizona
Ed Slaughter, Jason Irvin, and Lauren Wood prevailed on a motion for application of New Mexico law in a case filed in Phoenix, Arizona. HPTY represented a design engineering firm that was sued in connection with engineering and design services it allegedly performed during the construction of a New Mexico plant in the 1960s. Securing application of New Mexico law was a significant achievement given the existence of a New Mexico statute of repose precluding actions arising out of defective or unsafe conditions in real property after 10 years.
Although the plaintiffs immediately filed a Special Action challenging the trial court’s ruling, the Arizona Court of Appeals followed the defendant’s argument and summarily declined jurisdiction over the appeal. The plaintiffs next appealed to the Arizona Supreme Court, which requested briefing on the choice-of-law issue. After reviewing the briefing submitted by the parties, the Supreme Court also declined jurisdiction over the plaintiffs' appeal. That ruling paved the way for the Maricopa County court to hear the defendant’s summary judgment motion, in which we argue that New Mexico’s statute of repose bars the plaintiffs’ action against our client.