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Insolvency and Construction Disputes

Paper number

James Bowling

January 2011

A paper based on a talk given to a meetings of the Society of Construction Law in Southampton on 17th March 2010

The first part of the paper deals with the principles that the insolvency courts apply to determine whether the debtor under a Construction Act debt should be made bankrupt or wound up, and how the insolvency courts treat allegations that the debt is nevertheless disputed for the purposes of the Insolvency Act 1986. The second part deals with a number of issues that arise when a party to litigation, arbitration or adjudication is or becomes insolvent (including, the impact of insolvency on a party to a dispute; some considerations arising in arbitrations and adjudications; and the circumstances in which the insolvency courts will enforce an adjudicator's award in favour of an insolvent party).

Part 1: 'Pay now and argue later - or I'll wind you up' - The Insolvency Act 1986 v The Construction Act 1996 - The demands placed on debtors refusing to pay Construction Act debts - Part 11: Other issues arising on insolvency, adjudication and arbitration - The impact of formal insolvency on a party to a dispute - When will the court give permission to bring or continue a claim against an insolvent party? - Insolvent parties to adjudications and arbitrations.

The author: James Bowling is a barrister practising from 4 Pump Court, Temple, London.

Text 23 pages.