Skip to main content

How much are you asking for? Judge-created methods of controlling damages recoverable by employers under construction contracts

Paper number

Roger ter Haar QC and Rebecca Taylor

March 2013

A paper presented to the Society of Construction Law a meeting in London on 12th June 2012.

Roger ter Haar and Rebecca Taylor (from Crown Office Chambers in London) look in depth, with generous references and quotations from case law - including from recent decisions - at the doctrines which judges and courts have developed to limit the damages which a construction employer may expect to recover against another party to the same project. Their paper looks at claimants' attempts to recover the costs of completing the project; of remedying defective work; and of the negative consequences of delay. This in turn involves an application to construction of some fundamental principles of the law of contract in relation to how the reasonableness of a claim for damages may be assessed and the rules on remoteness of damage.

Costs of completion - Costs of remedying defects (The measure of loss - Date of assessment of loss - The significance of advice given by an expert - Mitigation of loss - Costs and other losses occasioned by delay (The prevention principle - The penalty doctrine - Where no liquidated damages are stipulated - Construction cases with remoteness issues).

The authors: Roger ter Haar QC and Rebecca Taylor are barristers practising at Crown Office Chambers, London.

Text 40 pages.