Substantial evidence supported the trial court’s finding that a general contractor did not reasonably rely on a subcontractor’s bid in entering into a public contract because the general relied on the sub’s bid price while ignoring substantial conditions stated in the sub’s bid (such as a 35% down payment to lock in supplier’s prices, 3% escalation per quarter in the bid price, no performance bond, etc.).  A general may rely on the sub’s bid in bidding for the general construction project and may hold the sub to its bid but may not accept the price and then seek to renegotiate the sub’s terms.  When the general in this case sent the sub a subcontract that materially differed from the conditions in the sub’s bid, it was making a counteroffer, not accepting the bid and so was not reasonably relying on the bid.  Accordingly, the trial court correctly entered judgment against the general on its promissory estoppel claim.

California Court of Appeal, Second District, Division 3 (Aldrich, Acting P.J.); June 21, 2016 (published July 19, 2016); 2016 WL 3947598