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Expert Witness : Building and Property

The alternative to litigation is cost-effective

Your Expert Witness RICS logoThe construction industry has been at the forefront of resolving disputes by way of so-called alternative dispute resolution. These alternatives to litigation have been encouraged by the courts and the government and, indeed, many construction contracts provide for disputes to be dealt with by mediation, adjudication or arbitration – often, according to a guide to process by the College of Estate Management, a combination of all three.

The largest provider of alternative dispute resolution services to the property and construction industries is that operated by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors. The RICS Dispute Resolution Service appoints around 10,000 dispute resolvers per year.

Last Updated on Thursday, 11 February 2016 16:41

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Adjudication may not help those who fail to follow statutory payment regime

The case of ISG Construction Ltd v Seevic College[1]  (the 'Seevic case') has provided helpful guidance on the court’s approach to disputes involving payment notices under the statutory payment regime introduced by the Construction Act[2]  and Part I of the Scheme[3] relating to payment. In particular the court made clear its reluctance to allow a party to use adjudication on a technicality to circumvent the payment provisions and reinforced the need to comply with the appropriate contractual or statutory payment and pay less notice provisions.

Last Updated on Friday, 21 August 2015 09:24

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Finding the right experts can make all the difference in global construction disputes

With more and more construction projects being undertaken on a global scale, contractors and stakeholders in those projects need to be alive to issues which are generating disputes, both globally and in specific regions, as they take on work in new markets.

To help explain those issues, the global projects and construction team at lawyers Clyde & Co has published a Guide to global construction dispute resolution.

The guide outlines areas of dispute internationally, before examining a number of regions that are expected to give rise to disputes.

John Morris, global projects and construction group head, said: 'Across the diverse range of political and legal landscapes in the global infrastructure market, it is pivotal that construction contractors and project stakeholders understand the context in which any dispute over legal, commercial or technical matters will be fought.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 June 2015 12:28

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New RIBA contracts for small projects

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has launched two innovative building contracts designed to be used in conjunction with RIBA's Architect's Appointment Agreements for Small Projects. The new contracts are fully aligned with the RIBA Plan of Work 2013 and have been designed in response to feedback from RIBA members calling for improvement and innovation within the building contracts currently available.

The RIBA Domestic Building Contract provides a simple, comprehensive and legally appropriate contract solution for all types of non-commercial work, including renovations, extensions, maintenance and new buildings. The contract is endorsed by the HomeOwners Alliance.

Last Updated on Friday, 20 February 2015 09:55

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Expert surveyors get new guidance

New guidance came into effect in July for surveyors who provide expert evidence to be relied upon in civil proceedings before a wide range of tribunals.

The document, published by the RICS and available for use by its members, explains the need for clear instructions and terms of engagement and outlines the format of a written report. It also clarifies the differences between the roles of expert and advocate, gives guidance on what to do in situations of conflict of interest and helps remove pressure upon experts to support their clients' cases irrespective of their honest professional opinion.

Announcing the publication of the guide, RICS said: 'This practice statement is also published in the form of an accompanying client guide, a copy of which can be supplied by the expert witness to the prospective client.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 September 2014 10:48

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