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In Place of Strife

The Mediation Chambers

Civil and Commercial - Construction and Property

Summary

Claim by building contractor for agreement and payment of the final account and counter claim for defects.

Background

The employer entered into a design and build contract with the contractor for construction of a mansion on a private gated estate in the home counties. The original contract was for over £4 million, but with many variations, the final account was for over £6 million. A dispute arose over the final account, particularly over the period of delay and its impact on preliminaries and whether liquidated damages could be claimed.

The employer indicated that he would counter claim for a significant schedule of defects.

Outcome

Overall the employer was pleased with his new house and appreciated the quality of most of the workmanship. He was happy to have the contractor back to remedy the defects. The scope of those works and the timescale were eventually agreed. The parties then negotiated a compromise on the final account together with staged payments geared to the completion of various stages of the remedial works.

The dispute was settled following pre-action protocol correspondence without the need for Proceedings. Costs on both sides were under £25,000. It was recognised that the costs of a full hearing would have been at least £250,000 per party.

Mediator: Mark Jackson-Stops