Construction & Engineering Mediation

More than 30 years’ experience of high level law practice, including my work as a specialist construction Adjudicator, have given me invaluable understanding of the disputes that the sector constantly generates.

As a construction lawyer I have acted on very many projects, large and small, including oil and gas fabrication, power station construction (Zimbabwe, UK, Jordan), subsea cables, hospital design and build, major civil engineering works, power generation (Jersey and Guernsey), energy from waste; airport terminals, hotel developments, shopping malls, housing estates, apartment blocks, procurement challenges, and party walls.

The Special Challenges of Construction Disputes

  • The legal background in the Construction Act generates complex and baffling problems for non-specialists in this area of law
  • There are many different, complex standard forms of contract, from JCT to IChemE, from NEC3/4 to FIDIC, to ICE, PPP, ACA and the NHS’ own special forms.
  • The construction and engineering process has its own special terminology and technology
  • Understanding the inter-locking roles and expectations of developers, employers, lenders, contractors, subcontractors, suppliers and design professionals is vital

My Approach

  • Objective analysis, thorough understanding and commercial realism.
  • I encourage the parties to make best use of the Position Statement process to distil and explain the dispute; in return I work hard to understand the key arguments and the issues;
  • Assist the decision makers to appraise risk and reward - settle now or fight on?

Case Studies

Complex civil engineering dispute, where court had ordered an adjournment to mediate. The expert witnesses offered radically different analyses of fault and loss, and there were complex issues of legal liability also.  Making fill use of Zoom's breakouts feature, the dispute was settled over a long day to the satisfaction and relief of both parties.

Technical final account evaluation dispute involving alleged wrongful suspension and repudiation.  Project was for refurbishment of several hundred dwellings. Issues around contract formation, terms of contract, difficulties of interpretation, complex legal argument; successfully resolved.

Seven figure dispute relating to civil engineering materials – alleged non-delivery, dispute over methods of measurement of quantities and non-delivery plus technical issues of quality and non-conformity with specification, extensive materials analysis evidence; counterclaim based on remediation.  Successfully resolved.

Dispute over software copying and copyright ownership between two design houses; very large petrochemical project. Solution involved mutual assistance and a new JV.

Variation claim for £5m plus extension of time; and complex defective works and delay counterclaim between main contractor and developer on a new apartment building, successfully settled.

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Rob was very well prepared and quickly focused on the key issues that really mattered


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