It's your worst nightmare: You've submitted a bid, it's been accepted, and then you find out there was a mistake in your estimate or that your bid was based on a subcontractor's mistake.

A recently decided legal case in California shows just how messy things can get when such a bidding error turns up. In this instance, after the prime contractor's bid was opened and accepted — but before the contract papers were signed — one of the subs told the prime contractor there was a huge mistake in that sub's bid.

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