Ambiguities are the primary causes of disputes under construction contracts – Which Programme to use when preparing or assessing an Extension of Time claim?
Date: 18 December 2019
Which Programme to use when preparing or assessing an Extension of Time claim?
I have previously talked about ambiguities in the contract that lead to disputes (click here to read the previous tip), here is another example:
Usually, the contract documents include the contractor’s tender programme. Under the New Zealand General Conditions of Contract NZS3910:2003 and 2013, the contractor is required to submit a detailed construction programme after contract award.
As you all know, the detailed construction programme can be substantially different (different methodology, sequence, float etc.) from the tender programme (for all different reasons which I will not elaborate on here).
However, there are no provisions in the contract that clarify which programme is to be used as a reference when preparing an Extension of Time claim (EOT).
In my experience, this is a common issue that adds another layer of complexity and unnecessary arguments that usually hinder the EOT preparation and assessment process. The lack of a provision about which programme is to be used diverts the focus from the actual matters in dispute to another layer of conflict that will need to be agreed and resolved before attending to the actual matters.
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