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He waka eke noa.

BuildLaw Issue 24 – June 2016

In this issue we feature ‘Judicial Remedies for Construction Defects: Common Law, Equity or Statute’, a paper prepared by Philip Britton and delivered by Philip to the Society of Construction Law New Zealand Inc in March of this year. We also present articles on limiting financial liability for contractors; the relevance of frustration in modern day construction contracts; delegation of an adjudicator’s decision making function; acting bona fide when calling on a bond (or not); varying no-variation clauses; entitlement to extensions of time in construction projects; and one good reason why milestone based entitlements to payment are really not such a good idea!

In ‘Case in Brief’, we present summaries of two recent cases of interest. NZ Fire Sprinkler Protection was a seminal case on how not to appoint an adjudicator under the Construction Contracts Act 2002 (to make matters worse, it is not the first time this has happened) and Iceland Drilling v Summit is an exemplar of the need to read the terms and conditions of any offer carefully – in this case the failure to read the second page cost Iceland Drilling nearly $1.3million.


  • Limiting financial liability for contractors
  • John Sisk & Son v Duro Felguro UK Ltd [2016] EWHC 81 (TCC)
  • Case in Brief: New Zealand Fire Sprinkler Protection Ltd v AFS Total Fire Protection Ltd [2016] NZHC 690
  • Facing frustration: the relevance of frustration in modern day construction contracts
  • Judicial Remedies for Construction Defects: Common Law, Equity or Statute?
  • Telling the truth is still the best policy: Laing O’Rourke Australia Construction Pty Ltd v Samsung C&T Corporation, March 2016
  • Beware – a contract can be varied orally or by conduct even if the contract says otherwise!
  • Case in Brief: Jardbonir HF trading as Iceland Drilling v Summit Hydraulic Solutions Ltd [2016] NZHC 490
  • Is time on your side: how is the completion date affected where delay is attributable to actions of both principal and contractor?
  • Where to from here: what to do when an interim payment schedule runs out

Bought a house – got problems – no one wants to know?

Author: Hannah Stanley, Building Disputes Tribunal Registrar As a homeowner, discovering structural defects in your home is the last thing you want and most wonder where to go from there in terms of their rights and how to remedy the situation. The Courts are often a...

Adjudication: calculating time over the Christmas period 2019-2020

What are the non-working days over the Christmas period this year?

The builder’s right to fix

Introduction When a dispute over defective building work turns ugly, the owner is sometimes tempted to refuse the builder the opportunity of returning to rectify the defects.  There are risks in this course.  This update considers a recent NSW Supreme Court decision...

Case In-Brief: Hybrid contracts and the payment provisions of the Construction Act

The Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1998 (the Act) applies to “construction operations”. Where a contract relates to both “construction operations” and non-construction operations, the question arises of how payment mechanisms apply to construction...

When can you go to Adjudication?

Under section 25 of the Act, any party to a construction contract is entitled to refer a dispute arising under that construction contract to adjudication except where the parties have agreed to refer disputes between them to arbitration and the arbitration is an...

Neutral Evaluation Revisited

by Royden Hindle [1] Neutral evaluation is a relatively little-used tool in the dispute resolution toolbox. Certainly, it has potential drawbacks: a party who is disappointed by an evaluator’s assessment may be slow to accept the outcome, while a party who feels...

A brief introduction to Adjudication

What is adjudication? Adjudication is a unique fast track statutory dispute resolution process or resolving building and construction disputes under the Act. It is the most commonly used dispute resolution process for resolving such disputes. Adjudication is quick and...

Initiating Adjudication: The Notice of Adjudication

Initiating Adjudication: Back to Basics   Part One: The Notice of Adjudication The preparation of the Notice of Adjudication is arguably the most important step in the Adjudication process under the Construction Contracts Act (the Act). It is that document...

Dispute Review Boards: a brief overview

Dispute Review Boards are known by many names. They are often referred to as Dispute Boards, Dispute Avoidance Boards, Dispute Adjudication Boards and Dispute Resolution Boards. Whatever their name, they have become a standard dispute...

Initiating Adjudication: Service of the Notice of Adjudication

Initiating Adjudication: Back to Basics   Part Two: Service of the Notice of Adjudication You have your Notice of Adjudication prepared, but what steps do you need to take to serve it? This note sets out in brief the requirements for service under the...

Initiating Adjudication: Appointing an Adjudicator

Initiating Adjudication: Back to Basics Part Three: Appointing an Adjudicator Following on from Part Two of our three-part series on initiating adjudication, in this note we briefly look at how to appoint an adjudicator under the Construction Contracts Act (the Act)....