Her experience includes acting for the employer in disputes regarding:
Poor workmanship/defective works
Defective works caused by a contractor’s poor workmanship occur frequently in construction projects.
Depending on the terms of their appointment, contractors are ordinarily under a contractual obligation to rectify defects during a set period following practical completion. Some defects however may go unnoticed until sometime after practical completion – these are known as “latent defects”. Examples of latent defects may be problems with foundations or failure of waterproofing leading to water ingress. Depending on the terms of the agreement, sometimes a contractor’s liability for latent defects expires before they are discovered.
Defects may also arise from a design flaw beyond the contractor’s remit, for example, due to a defective design by an architect or other professional consultant. In cases such as this, it may be possible to bring a claim against the consultant (for example, an architect) for failure to exercise the skill and care required of them as the designer. If the contractor has taken responsibility for the design as well as the build, it may be possible to claim for any design defects against the contractor.
Delays are a frequent occurrence in construction projects and those that cause a project to overrun a set completion date can cause the employer both inconvenience and additional costs.
When a set completion date has been agreed, a contractor has no automatic statutory or common law right to an extension of time should they need one. Therefore, many standard construction contracts provide an express provision to allow for extensions of time when necessary.
Extensions of time can be a highly contentious issue, with the two parties disagreeing on the delaying affect an event has had and the extent of delay this has caused.