Category: Review

Contracts win prizes for clarity

Contracts win prizes, although not in this case… It is common ground that the Deed of Variation in this case would win no drafting prizes for precision or clarity. It included errors … which are acknowledged by both sides, and it also struggled to convey the essential agreement reached between

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What’s in a name? An Irish letter of intent

When discussing letters of intent, this blog has so far focused almost exclusively on the current (dire) examples in use in the UK construction industry. These are mostly a mish mash of types of contract, cobbled together and sent with fingers firmly crossed behind the sender’s back. After talks on

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Review your contract: use STAR

Do you have a ‘haphazard’ or ‘cavalier’ approach to the terms of your contracts? Back in 2011, the OFT found evidence that contract users did not “properly assess the transaction or deal they enter into.” It is not a luxury to make sure your contract helps you do business, and

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NEC3 digested and condensed

Many people choose a construction contract not for its cost, nor for its fine words, but for their familiarity with the terms and conditions. Although one of the shorter standard forms, what if we could condense NEC… what should it say? No précis of NEC3 could omit its principal feature:

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Quality: fit for what purpose?

Fitness for purpose is a phrase much debated and bandied about. But what does it really mean? What your contract needs If you want your contract to provide a project which is ‘fit for purpose’ you need three things: a contractor responsible for both design and construction (either D&B or

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Your contract’s hidden terms: implied by statute

However well-drafted your contract is, there are some terms you cannot avoid and which may be added into your contract. Implied terms can be added to your contract, without your knowledge. They can arise from custom, be imposed by statute (legislation, laws, rules and regulations), or from decisions of the

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Your contract’s hidden terms: implied by custom

However well-drafted your contract is, there are some terms you cannot avoid and which may be added into your contract. Implied terms can be added to your contract, without your knowledge. They can arise from custom or practice (general, mercantile or local), be imposed by statute, or from decisions of

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Review your contract: scope

The first element in my STAR analysis is Scope. When reviewing a contract, it is critical that the obligations of both partners are clearly set out. Often the provider – the company providing the goods, materials, and plant or carrying out the works or performing the services – gets all

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Review your contract: key aim

In most contracts, there is a balance to be struck between 3 key aims: time, cost and quality. It is impossible to have the best of all three. The British Library project is a great example of when the decision-makers chose quality as their priority, sometimes without thinking about the

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Review your contract: risk

The final element in my STAR analysis is Risk. Risk v Reward When reviewing your contract, you need to strike a balance between risk and reward (harm v benefits). Risk is inextricably linked to price and cost. If your deal seems too good to be true, it often is! In

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