Increasing Costs and Fluctuations Provisions

Blog Author: Peter Hibberd Recently, the Bank of England governor claimed that his ex-chief economist’s view that inflation may reach 4% was alarmist and that we should not overreact to rising prices. Overreacting is one thing but making sensible provision is another. Fluctuations in labour and material prices in relation to construction projects can, and do, quickly erode a contractor’s margin. Over recent years, price inflation has been benign, which has led to those entering building contracts giving less consideration to its impact and to…

Coming soon – JCT Training Video Modules

JCT is adding to its expanding range of JCT Training services with a new range of video modules, accessible via the JCT website. The current range of JCT Training includes face-to-face training day sessions, and our popular range of 3-hour, interactive webinar sessions. The Training Video Modules will provide an alternative service, for those looking for smaller, easier to access chunks – ideal for brushing up on a certain area of a contract over a lunch break. About JCT Training Video Modules Ideal for those…

Government Initiatives Create Opportunities for Businesses and Homeowners

Blog Author: Peter Hibberd The construction industry, in keeping with most other industries, is going through one of the most challenging periods known to those currently employed. In April this year, construction activity, according to the ONS, fell by 40% month on month for new works and around 38% for repair works. Not surprising given lockdown, but a degree of miscommunication meant that many contractors stopped working when they could have continued, albeit with restrictions. As we emerge from lockdown, and business takes on a…

Construction Contract Execution During Covid-19 and Beyond

Blog Authors: Marcus Harling and Alistair Russell – Burges Salmon LLP Electronic signatures, data rooms, Mercury execution? Evolving working arrangements mean we should all double check exactly how to execute construction documents. Whilst smart contracts and digital signatures are still very much the immediate future, for most people they did not arrive in time to help with the complexities of contract execution created by the COVID-19 lockdown. Suddenly the traditional way of contract execution became almost impossible and old questions on remote Mercury compliant execution…

Build and Create Your JCT Contracts Online with JCT Construct

Out now, JCT’s new digital service, JCT Construct, is a contract drafting system with advanced editing features, enabling you to create and amend your JCT contracts in a secure, flexible, and easy to use online environment. The system enables the editing of the JCT contract text itself, so that you can add your own amendments, clauses, or other customised text. This works alongside an intuitive Q&A process so that you can be guided through filling in your contract easily and comprehensively. Each time progress is…

Alliancing With Excellence

Blog Author: Peter Hibberd Those involved with construction frequently berate themselves and others for its poor performance; often rightly. However, there remains a failure to recognise fully what can be done to improve. The tendency to concentrate simply on improving efficiency is not enough because one can be efficient without creating value. What must be improved is quality and productivity as these will create project life value for the client and a better return to the participants without increasing costs disproportionately. Those two objectives are…

JCT On Demand – New Contracts Now Available

The next batch of JCT Contracts to be made available via the JCT On Demand digital service is now live, including a range of some of our best-selling sub-contracts. JCT On Demand enables users to purchase a digital version of the JCT hardcopy contract via the JCT online store and fill in the contract in a safe, secure, online environment. It uses an intuitive Q&A process to enable users to complete their contracts comprehensively. The system also enables saving and printing drafts, printing out a…

The Fluctuating Fortunes of Brexit

Blog Author: Peter Hibberd Just over two years ago I suggested that it was time to brush up on the use and operation of the fluctuation provisions in building contracts. A suggestion spurred by the advent of Brexit and its ambient uncertainty; an uncertainty plain to see. The risk of having entered into contracts that span the Brexit leaving date, without adequate protection from fluctuations, could leave parties in a precarious situation. One can still act to mitigate potential loss but the situation is far…

Do the Different Tiers of Building Contract Really Need to be Back to Back?

Blog Author: Alexandra Reid The main JCT contracts specify that where this is ‘considered appropriate’ the contractor should engage its sub-contractors using the relevant version of the JCT sub-contract which sits beneath the main contract in question. JCT contracts are therefore drafted in such a way that ‘back to back’ obligations are ensured. So what can this mean for contractors? A short answer is that the JCT has satisfied itself that its own sub-contracts have been carefully drafted to ensure that their key contractual terms…

What’s Wrong with Retention?

Blog Author: Peter Hibberd Retentions meet a real need and aren’t a problem in themselves – it’s how they are administered that needs fixing The clarion call for no retention has persisted for many years and has once more initiated action. This time BEIS undertook a consultation “on the practice of cash retention under construction contracts”, with its outcome imminent. Meanwhile a private members’ bill from Peter Aldous received its first reading but its second is delayed until October. The cynical might consider this a…