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What Lies Beneath: Site Conditions and Contract Risk

Paper number

Julian Bailey

May 2007

A paper based on the first prize entry in the SCL Hudson Prize essay competition 2006, presented to a meeting of the Society of Construction Law in London on 1st May 2007

Where site conditions make a project more time-consuming or expensive (or both) than expected, how is the risk of this allocated between the parties? In this 2006 Hudson Prize paper Julian Bailey looks at the default position - if the parties do not provide expressly for this category of risk in their contract; at how the common standard forms provide for site conditions risk; and at other relevant legal doctrines, including the law of misrepresentation. His examples and sources come from a wide range of common law jurisdictions and his paper suggests preferred ways of addressing site conditions risk, in order to reduce the uncertainty and disputes which such issues can cause.

Introduction - 1 General Position - 2 Allocation of risk by contract -3 Information provided to the contractor - 4 Contractual relief for adverse ground conditions - Conclusions.

The author: Julian Bailey is a solicitor with CMS Cameron McKenna LLP.

Text 21 pages.

PDF file size: 266k