In Common Construction Delays and How to Avoid Them Part 2, we will continue to discuss construction delays, the potential costs associated with them, and steps to take if a delay occurs. To view the first half of this article, please visit Part 1.
The Law Recognizes The Effect Of Time Delays
A contractor must take on the delay costs for a construction project unless it can be proven that:
- The delay is excusable
- The delay is compensable
- The delay is critical
If the delay is excusable, it is a delay that is unforeseeable and beyond the control of the general contractor. If the delay is non-excusable, it is a delay that is foreseeable or within the general contractor’s control. Examples of excusable delays are severe weather, design changes from the owner, and labor union strikes. An example of an inexcusable delay or something the contractor could have prevented may include lacking proper equipment, lacking materials, or failure to properly schedule workers.
Compensable delays are typically defined in the contract. It’s usually known as a “No damages for delay” clause. The contractor can be compensated for a specific delay cost depending on the specific circumstance.
If the delay did not influence the timely finalization, then it was not critical and therefore is not a delay cost that the contractor can get reimbursed for.
Steps to Take if a Delay Occurs
As your Orlando construction lawyers, we highly recommend that as a contractor, you follow these steps:
Provide Written Notice Of The Event
Written notice should be done in accordance with the terms of the contract. A contract will typically have thorough guidelines on what the notice needs to say, along with who it should be presented to and how much time the contractor has to provide the notice before relinquishing the claim.
Document The Delay
The delay itself must be documented for the contractor’s records. The documentation needs to include what date the delay occurred on, who received the notice and the date the notice was sent, how the delay impacted the project, and any suggested change orders.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.