Law

Big deals: the top 3 reasons to enlist construction lawyers

Building disputes happen all the time. Investing in a new a build or major renovation is a massive life and financial undertaking that cannot be taken lightly. However, if you encounter problems with your builder or their subcontractors then it is highly likely you will need the help of a reputable solicitor to advise on the issue.

With this in mind, here are three kinds of building disputes that require the best construction lawyers Melbourne has available:

⦁ Contractor issues

The main issue that arises with contractors is delays. There are many reasons for this, including:

⦁ A severe weather event or natural disaster has put a hold on work. This can typically be excused if the weather event or natural disaster has had a severe impact on the affected site.

However, it can be the cause for a building dispute, as some weather events can cause significant delays in construction;
⦁ The scheduling process where a project float (the amount of time for which a particular tasks can be delayed before it impacts the project’s overall deadline) causes a difference of opinion between contractor and client when dealing with delays;
⦁ If the contractor makes a mistake through negligence;
⦁ An inexperienced contractor who is unable to complete the job they advertised.

⦁ Changes & variations

Building projects are ever-changing processes that often involve a reactionary approach. Often, plans change at a moment’s notice, and therefore contracts typically have clauses that allow this to happen without changing the build’s overall nature.

These changes typically regard things like budget, scope of work, site conditions etc. and are a normal occurrence.

However, problems can arise when:

⦁ External factors like site limitations inhibiting builders;
⦁ There were design & planning issues;
⦁ There wasn’t enough equipment, materials or parts to do the job as a result of delivery issues, and;
⦁ The owner or designer makes a sudden change that wasn’t included in the original scope.

⦁ Problems in the design & planning phase

The design and planning phases are crucial to the overall build as they have to be done properly to avoid potential disputes. If issues, errors and ambiguities arise in the design and planning phase, they will no doubt show up throughout the actual building process.

An example for design error is underestimating the amount of materials needed to complete a particular section, only for the builders to find out they need more later on, thus causing budgetary issues that were not considered in the original scope.

These kinds of disputes occur when:

⦁ The designers & planners quickly finalise their plans without proper consideration;
⦁ The designers or planners don’t receive enough feedback throughout the design & planning phases.
⦁ A lack of thorough communication between all parties with a vested interest.

Design and engineering specialists are typically the responsible party when it comes to mistakes, errors and ambiguities in the design and planning phases. Therefore, it is vital that the party responsible for the issues that could arise throughout these stages as well as communicating any changes/issues with vested interests so there can be no question about communication regarding the problem.

These are just three main reasons why building disputes arise and owners enlist the help of experienced construction lawyers. If you have recently experienced any of these problems and would like the advice of reputable solicitors, they can help you choose the right course of action and hopefully produce a winning result regarding the issue.

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