Commercial Law for the Construction Sector

Whether you are an employer, contractor or consultant working on commercial or residential projects or railways, roads and bridges, we are specialist construction solicitors who understand your business.

More about Commercial Law for the Construction Sector

More about Commercial Law for the Construction Sector

Our experienced construction team is full service, so we can provide bespoke construction legal advice structured to help you achieve your goals. We regularly advise on various matters including contract review and negotiations, procurement strategies and disputes for building, construction and engineering projects. Our legal construction services within cover all aspects of the development and construction process and our specialist construction solicitors help go beyond pure contract drafting and encompass strategic advice, risk management, due diligence and disputes. The construction team here at Forbes Solicitors act for various parties in the construction sector, from public bodies and financial institutions to major developers, builders, land owners, lenders/funders, facilities management companies, contractors, subcontractors, consultants and more.

We can support you with areas such as:

  • Building contracts (including making use of JCT and NEC models and associated amendments)

  • Subcontracts

  • Collateral Warranties

  • Professional Appointments

  • Performance Guarantees and Bonds

  • Corporate Guarantees

  • Deeds of Novation/Variation

  • Letters of Intent

  • Letters of Reliance

Our construction solicitors understand the technical and legal issues that affect a construction project and are able to offer assistance and advice from inception to completion. We are able to get involved at any stage of a project, however we feel that clients benefit when we work alongside them at the earliest opportunity. Our construction team is recognised for being pragmatic and for getting the deal done efficiently. Construction contracts and development projects can be complex, so our construction team will be at hand to assist you every step of the way.

As a full-service law firm, we work closely with our Commercial Property, Employment, Litigation and Corporate departments to provide each and every client with our detailed technical knowledge of the construction industry and expertise regarding construction law. Some of our construction solicitors have a background in engineering and can therefore also assist with engineering contracts.

Why choose our construction solicitors?

Why choose our construction solicitors?

Our construction solicitors have extensive experience in all aspects of construction law, including contract drafting and negotiation, dispute resolution, and project management. We provide practical and cost-effective solutions tailored to meet the specific needs of our clients. Our team is dedicated to delivering exceptional service and achieving the best possible outcomes for our clients. With our expertise and commitment, you can trust us to protect your interests and help you achieve your goals.

Who do our construction solicitors help?

Who do our construction solicitors help?

Our construction solicitors help clients in the construction industry, including contractors, developers, architects, engineers, subcontractors, suppliers, and owners.How can our construction lawyers help?Our construction lawyers can provide legal advice and representation for a wide range of construction-related issues, including contract disputes, construction defects, payment disputes and regulatory compliance. We can also assist with drafting and negotiating contracts, reviewing project documents, and providing risk management advice. Our goal is to help our clients navigate the complex legal landscape of the construction industry and achieve successful outcomes.

Our legal team possesses extensive knowledge and expertise in providing top-notch commercial legal services and support to clients in the construction industry. Contact us now to connect with our solicitors.

Additional Information

What does a construction solicitor do?

A construction solicitor provides legal advice and assistance to clients involved in construction projects. They may advise on contracts, disputes, planning and environmental regulations, health and safety, and other legal issues related to construction. They also represent clients in negotiations, mediations, arbitrations, and court proceedings.

Why do I need a Construction Contract?

It is crucial to have a solid contract in place that covers every aspect of the construction project you will be working on. Without one, your legal recourse will be limited or potentially compromised. Not having a formal agreement in place means that if for example a client does not pay, it is much harder to recover all you believe that you are owed or intended to charge for. A construction contract will outline everything the project will consist of and how to deal with additions, omissions and variations. A construction contract commonly includes terms that deal with:

The agreed costs or rates; Who are the parties to the project and their roles; The scope of the works; A payment schedule; Time for completion and programme; Provisions for unexpected circumstances or delays; and The rights, liabilities and obligations of all parties involved.

What is a professional consultant and when should I appointment them?

A professional consultant provides specialist design, advice or other services in relation to a construction project, whereas a contractor carries out the physical building word (or procures it through subcontractors). Together, the group of professional consultants engaged on a project is known as the 'professional team'.

It is beneficial to appoint at least one key professional consultant (such as an architect) at an early stage of a project as the professional consultant can guide you through the project and advise on what other professional disciplines you may need to appoint.

See our Professional Appointments page that discusses this further and how our expert construction solicitors can advise you further.

Commercial FAQs

What is the purpose of a Force Majeure Clause?

Force majeure events are certain acts, events or circumstances, defined within an agreement, which are beyond the control of the contracting parties. They may include natural disasters, the outbreak of hostilities or, in some instances, the declaration of a pandemic / epidemic.

A force majeure clause tends to excuse one or both parties from performance of the contract (normally allowing for a delay) following the occurrence of a force majeure event. Fundamentally, the purpose of a force majeure clause is to outline whether or not a party will be liable to the other for its failure to perform the obligations as a result of specific circumstances which are beyond its control. The clause may also allow for the contract to be terminated (without liability being owed) if the force majeure event continues for a specified period of time.

What is Construction law?

Construction law is a branch of law that pertains to the rights and obligations of parties involved in the construction of a physical structure or project. It includes contract negotiation, dispute resolution, and compliance with building codes and regulations. It may also include areas such as land use, zoning, environmental laws, and insurance.

What is Frustration of Contract?

Frustration of contract occurs where, for an unforeseen event, performance of a contract becomes impossible; the contract effectively comes to an end and the parties are released from their respective obligations.

While this may sound appealing to a party struggling to meet its obligations, case law has emphasized that frustration will only apply in very narrow circumstances. A contract cannot, for example, be "temporarily" frustrated. It is either frustrated or performance is delayed (potentially due to a force majeure event).

The terms of the contract may also eliminate a party's ability to rely on frustration. In some instances, the contract may include a "hell or highwater clause" - an absolute clause applied, for example, to equipment lease agreements which requires the party to pay irrespective of whether the other party's performance is frustrated.

What is the difference between the JCT and NEC suites contract?

Both NEC and JCT contracts suites of standard forms of documents for procuring works or consultancy services.

While the JCT has been described as a 'traditional' contract and for many years was seen as the standard building contract for use in England and Wales, the NEC suite has been designed for international use with a choice of governing law and language.

Each contract has an allotted person to act on behalf of the employer (a contract administrator in JCT and project manager in NEC). They both include obligations relating to time, cost and quality (although the explicit requirements are quite different).

The NEC suite does however include procedures providing for a more proactive and collaborative approach to managing the contract and requires the parties to follow these procedures.

What is a Collateral Warranty?

A collateral warranty is an auxiliary document to the primary contract and is used where there is an agreement with a third party who is outside of the primary contract.

Fundamentally, a collaterally warranty is an agreement under which a professional consultant, building contractor or sub-contractor warrants to a third party (usually the funder, leaseholder or purchaser) that it has complied with its appointment or sub-contract. In essence a collateral warranty provides the third party with contractual recourse in the event of any issues relating to the work provided by the party entering the warranty.

We have been asked to supply a Parent Company Guarantee. What is it?

A parent company guarantee (PCG) is a form of security provided by a parent company to a client of its subsidiary. The purpose being to protect the client in the event of default on a contract. Typically, such a default might be caused by the insolvency of the subsidiary company. A PCG will normally obligate the parent company to either step in to fulfil the obligations of the subsidiary or guarantee any potentially liabilities of the subsidiary company.

Our dedicated Construction & Infrastructure team

Adam Bromley.jpg

Partner & Head of Property, Commercial Property

Adam Bromley

John Pickervance.jpg

Partner and Head of Department, Commercial

John Pickervance

Sheroze Nadeem.jpg

Associate, Commercial Litigation

Sheroze Nadeem

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