'Construction contracts are like restaurant menus'
Numerous options are available in terms of construction contracts, in a manner akin to facing a restaurant menu, regional legal expert tells Construction Week
Picking the right construction contract is key to project success and avoiding delays, a legal expert told Construction Week.
Sachin Kerur, head of Middle East for legal firm Pinsent Masons, said: “I think choosing a construction contract today is rather like being faced with a restaurant menu. You have choices and just like you would in a restaurant, you choose that which best suits you at that time.
“There are a host of construction contracts out there, on the menu so to speak, but the trick is to ensure the right contract is used for the right project," Kerur continued.
"Where I think we do see errors is in the selection of forms of contract. Be that FIDIC or any other form – time and again the wrong form is selected."
Kerur claimed all forms of contracts are “very clear”, and comprise guides as to when they should – or shouldn’t – be used.
“You’ll find a problem if you try to violate those guides; they’re there for a reason, they’re telling you when to use them,” he said,
“If you try to vandalise a standard form of contract too much, then you’ll end up with a contract which simply wasn’t designed to work in circumstances you [initially wanted it to].
“They are initially thought through and drafted by committees, and should be subject to fairly limited tinkering, but what happens is, as I said, they are heavily amended, heavily vandalised, and they don’t bear any resemblance to the equilibrium that was provided for at the outset of the contract,” Kerur explained.