Superior Court upholds $20M verdict against Pulte Homes

A three-judge Superior Court panel has let stand a $20 million verdict against developer Pulte Homes for breaching a deal to build a residential golf community in Chester County.

Pulte was sued by partner Applecross Club Operations LLC, the intended operator of the golf course and a club house, for scaling its residential-development plans back from 1,000 homes in East Brandywine and West Brandywine Townships to just over 600. Applecross argued during a two-week trial in September 2015 that reducing the number of residences also reduced the value of its golf operation, and the jury agreed.

On appeal, Pulte argued that under its contract with Applecross, it was under no obligation to build all the homes. But the Superior Court panel said the issue had been correctly decided by the trial court, which found the agreement between Pulte and Applecross called for the larger project.