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Construction Law/FIDIC SC 20.1_Failure to submit detailed claim


Dear John,

In terms of SC 20.1 of the FIDIC Plant and Design Build form of Contract, the Contractor loses entitlement to a claim (time barred)should he fail to provide notice of a claim within 28 days of when the Contractor became aware, or should have became aware of the event or circumstance.  The Contractors are usually very diligent on this matter.

The Contractor is further required to provide a fully detailed claim 42 days after the Contractor became aware, or should have became aware of the event or circumstance. Here, the Contract is not explicit on the recourse should the Contractor fail to meet this deadline.  Can the Contractor also be time barred?  If not, what contractual recourse does the Employer have in a case where the Contractor does not meet this deadline period?

I suppose, the same question would apply, what recourse is there for the Contractor, if the Engineer fails to respond within the stipulated 42 days?

Kind Regards

Dear Paul,

Thank you for this question.

Under the standard FIDIC terms there is no stated consequence of the contractor being late in submitting the detailed particulars of claim. In common law the subjective test is whether or not the Employer was prejudiced by such late submissions.

Where the Engineer fails to respond to a detailed submission within the stated period, the consequences may be more severe. Although both could be said to be mis-managing the contract, the Contractor is responsible for the outcome of its own default but where the Engineer is guilty of mis-management the responsibility rests with the Employer and the Contractor's entitlement may increase significantly. further the Employer may lose entitlement to, for example, liquidated damages.

I hope that this assists you.

Kind regards,
John Dowse

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John Dowse


Legal; contract interpretation; quantum; delay analysis. Practitioner in arbitration, adjudication and mediation.


Thirty-three (33) years experience in building and construction, at all levels both within contracting and consulting organisations. Practising arbitrator, adjudicator, and mediator. Faculty approved trainer for the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. Lecturer on construction contract forms and dispute resolution practices.

Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Institute of Directors Society of Construction Arbitrators

Various UK and International construction and legal publications.

LLB (Hons), Pg Dip (Legal Practice), MCInstCES MCIArb MIOD Barrister

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