Despite the changes that the construction industry is facing, we wanted to reassure you that our specialists here at Arbicon continue to be able to resolve your disputes, assisting in the management of all notices, agreements and settlements. We are continuing to follow government guidance and our team is working from home, albeit fully contactable on phone and email.
With Boris Johnson addressing the Nation last night, announcing “you must stay at home”, as he placed the UK on lockdown in a bid to stop the Covid-19 Pandemic, the reality of lockdown for the UK has struck, but has it? Boris was so flowery in his delivery last night that everyone is confused, especially contractors and what this means for construction sites. Rightly so, contractors are in total confusion as to what this means for them and have asked for clarity after a Cabinet minister said it was fine for sites to remain open – less than 90 minutes after the Prime Minister announced the three-week Coronavirus lockdown.
With the recent changes in Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance, we wanted to reassure you that during this testing time we are doing our upmost to continue business as usual in assisting customers with their construction disputes, while keeping health and safety top of mind.
The JCT contract suites do not mention what happens in the event of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) or anything like it shutting down the World. So, what commercial problems will construction contracts face and how can the contract deal with this unprecedented situation?
Arbicon are celebrating 14 years in business this year. Managing Director, Jonathan Nugent, founded the company in 2006, and reflects below on the issues that construction contractors are regularly facing, which inherently lead to construction disputes.
For years the misconception of resolving a dispute is the need to go to court! In fact, a commercial contract dispute can be resolved with Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) which is ‘anything but go to court’ and offers many advantages, which we take a look at.....
If you search for articles on late payment relating to SMEs, you find publications deal with complaints and statistics showing how the problem is rife but actually offer no solution. All articles refer to optimistic future actions to be taken by the government, such as undefined fines and sanctions that have never materialised. The Chamber of Commerce says it plans to lobby parliament on this problem in the New Year, but what is it going to ask for? Late payment always becomes more acute when money gets tight, you see more bankruptcies and this year it has been a particularly trying one, for example with the uncertainty of Brexit.
Continuing the topic of Construction Act Improvement, what if any changes should be adopted to improve the way in which Retention is dealt with? Retention has been a cause of complaint and quarrel for all time in construction contracts. It is designed to allow the Paying Party (e.g. the Employer or Contractor) a means to hold on to money due, just in case there is a dispute later. It is normally 3% - 5% taken from the gross value of the account as work proceeds and is in theory paid at the end of the project when everything is agreed and signed off.