Contract and advisory
We have extensive experience drafting, negotiating and advising on the terms of contracts for a range of clients covering transport, infrastructure, healthcare, retail, housing, hotels and leisure and education projects.
We advise on a wide range of construction contracts including all main industry standard form contracts (JCT, NEC, FIDIC, GC/Works, IChemE) in addition to drafting and negotiating bespoke main and sub-contracts to support our clients commercial requirements
Our expertise covers major capital works through to repairs and refurbishment and asset management, from project inception to the end of a building’s lifecycle.
We are experienced at drafting, negotiating and reviewing consultancy appointments (both bespoke and standard form such as RIBA, JCT, NEC) for a variety of consultants including architects, surveyors and engineers.
When acting for professional consultants we seek to achieve a fair balance of risk with the client whilst providing practical advice tailored to the requirements of each consultant. When negotiating and advising consultancy appointments we look at core standard of care, limitations on liability, the fee payment mechanism, insurance levels and protection of intellectual property rights
We work alongside our commercial real estate and corporate teams providing due diligence on construction documents for funders, purchasers, and tenants to identify any potential pitfalls in the construction documents and ensuring that our clients’ interests are protected.
Novation and assignments
Effective provision for novation is a key contractual tool for clients in planning, progressing and dealing with issues arising on construction projects. As design and build procurement is one of the most popular forms of procurement within the industry, our team has considerable experience of incorporating novation into the structure of design and build procured projects. We regularly advise on novation policy in terms of project structuring and risk profiling and drafting and negotiating novation agreements on behalf of employers and end user clients.
PI Insurance, brokers and insurers
We have extensive experience of acting for professional indemnity insurers, brokers and their insureds. We provide front end advice on the terms of the insured’s building contracts, professional appointments, collateral warranties and other security documents.
We also specialise in insurance dispute resolution, in particular the defence of construction professionals in complex, high value disputes. We advise on PI and D&C policy wordings and have provided numerous seminars and workshops on insurance law topics for PI insurers and brokers.
“In my experience, the Clarkslegal construction team are extremely professional, knowledgeable and friendly.”
Read, listen and watch our latest insights
- 10 May 2022
Building Safety Act receives Royal Assent
The long-anticipated Building Safety Act (BSA) has completed its passage through Parliament and received Royal Assent. The BSA, which is the culmination of reforms following the Grenfell fire tragedy, has both been described as ‘the biggest changes to building safety legislation’ and having ‘changed beyond all recognition’ from the Building Safety Bill first introduced.
- 02 March 2022
Claims for payment – when is it too late?
One of the first things you learn as a law student is that the standard limitation period for claims in contract is six years in the UK. But when do the six years start running?
- 11 June 2021
Agree terms before starting construction work
With time pressures on project delivery, getting the contract agreed before works start is a recurring issue in the construction industry. In the recent case of Balfour Beatty Regional Construction Limited v Van Elle Ltd EWHC 794, the Technology and Construction Court (TCC) held that works carried out by a sub-contractor before a sub-contract was executed were still subject to the terms of that sub-contract.
- 07 April 2021
Does a construction contract require a final account mechanism?
The recent case of JSM Construction Limited v Western Power Distribution (West Midlands) plc considers whether construction contracts require a final account mechanism.
- 23 February 2021
VAT reverse charge for construction services
Following the postponement of the VAT reverse charge commencement date in September 2019 and October 2020, HMRC guidance states that the VAT reverse charge on construction services will now come into force from 1 March 2021.
- 09 February 2021
COVID-19 and its impact on JCT contracts
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a substantial impact on the construction industry in the UK. Labour shortages and shortages of plant and materials have adversely affected many projects, which in turn has resulted in additional costs and delays.
“The construction team at Clarkslegal support us with all aspects of construction. They provide a seamless service to us and our clients with superb teamwork. They are diligent and thorough in their work, and are very commercial and friendly in their advice and dealings with us and our clients.”
Dinesh Raja, Managing Partner – Bowling & Co
“I have worked with Stephen James on a number of issues and have always found him to be helpful, knowledgeable and proactive in reaching a satisfactory conclusion. He tends to grasp the details of a claim quickly and insightfully.”