Skip to main content

Fitness for Purpose Obligations

Paper number

Kirstin Bardel and Ann Minogue

July 2013

A paper presented to the Society of Construction Law at a meeting in London on 14th May 2013

This paper explores the extent and application of possible implied fitness for purpose obligations in construction contracts, both in relation to the component materials and systems which make up a building and in relation to the finished structure. It specifically addresses the Court of Appeal's decision in Trebor Bassett Holdings and The Cadbury UK Partnership v ADT Fire and Security which raises issues concerning when the implied terms as to fitness for purpose and satisfactory quality of goods and materials under section 4 of the Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 apply and what may or may not be covered by the terms 'goods' and 'systems'. It concludes with a discussion as to how some of the issues raised might be dealt with in practice in terms of contract drafting.

Introduction - Trebor v ADT - Initial comments on the Court of Appeals' decision in Trebor - The IBA line of cases - The Trebor decision and IBA line of cases - How far does the IBA line of cases extend? - Practical issues.

The authors: Kirstin Bardel solicitor, is a counsel professional development lawyer specialising in construction at Ashurst LLP: and Ann Minogue solicitor, is a partner and head of construction for the London office at Ashurst LLP:

Text 19 pages.