Last year an array of amendments were made to the Construction Contracts Act 2002 (CCA), to be implemented in three stages, namely on 1 December 2015, 1 September 2016, and 31 March 2017. For our earlier bulletin with details of the Stage 1 amendments follow this link
Stage 2 amendments
On 1 September 2016 the definition of “construction work” was extended to include design, engineering and quantity surveying work. Naturally this covers the normal scope of works of Architects, Engineers and Quantity Surveyors, but it also covers unqualified persons that provide design, engineering and quantity surveying works/services as part of the building contract.
Under the amendment, parties to building contracts that relate to design, engineering and quantity surveying will now be able to access the payment process, the protection it affords, and commence Adjudication as a Claimant. However, in an effort to increase consumer protection, it also means that an Adjudication claim could be brought against them as a Respondent.
Adjudication is a means of dispute resolution, and has often been referred to as a “quick and dirty” process because of the short timeframes involved. Given that many professions that offer design, engineering and quantity surveying work are likely to have Professional Indemnity insurance in place, which can be slow to approve cover let alone responding to a claim within five working days, it will be interesting to see how these professions and their insurers adapt to the new amendments.
The amendment only affects building contracts entered into or renewed from1 September 2016.