Construction disputes are highly complicated due to their technical nature. The common factors that can trigger a construction dispute, may include amongst others:
- Delays in the work progress
- Non -payment of part payments or the final accounts
- Disputes concerning variations
- Defect liability and quality issues
- Breach of contract
- Back-to-back payment terms
Large-scale construction projects in the UAE follow the FIDIC principles in terms of contract construction. FIDIC stands for International Federation of Consulting Engineers (commonly known as FIDIC, an acronym for its French name Fédération Internationale Des Ingénieurs-Conseils), which is an international standards organization for engineering & construction, and best known for contract templates for construction.
When discussing construction disputes, it goes without saying that it is best suited to avoid potential disputes in the first instance by ensuring that clear contractual terms are entered into between the parties as per industry standard and FIDIC principles. The Construction industry being highly technical is it essential to maintain keen legal acumen in handling matters concerning bonds, liens, finances etc. Along with it, the parties must include provisions for disputes resolution via litigation or alternative dispute resolution in the form of mediation and arbitration. An ineffective dispute resolution clause can potentially tie down the parties to costly, lengthy, as well as even parallel litigation processes.
The Dubai court has recently issued new guidelines that provide a clearer process in terms of handling construction disputes in the emirate. Pursuant to th