Construction Law/Liquidated damages


We are presently in a contract using Fidic 1999 Red Book, we did not follow the clause 20.1 contractors claim and send a claim for liquidated damagesn the 5/2/13 which was past the 28 days for notice and 42 days for detail claim but the engineer did not respond to our claim to date. What is our options in this matter.



Dear Bissessar,

Thank you for this question.

As I am based in Trinidad & Tobago, if you would like to discuss this please e-mail to me ( and we can discuss.

I am somewhat confused by your statements. You have indicated that you sent a claim for Liquidated Damages; I presume that you are the Employer organisation. As the Employer there is no time limit on which to submit a claim; the 28 days which applies to the Contractor under sub-clause 20.1 is not relevant to claims made by the Employer. Employer's claims against the Contractor are made under sub-clause 2.5.

If you are the Contractor then the time limit in sub-clause 20.1 is a clear pre-condition to entitlement. Failing to observe that pre-condition can be critical to the Contractor's claim. I would need to know a lot more about the facts and prevailing circumstances before drawing a definite conclusion.

If your claim is valid and the Engineer has not responded then the next step would be for you to invoke the Dispute Adjudication clauses.

Given the situation I suggest that you do make contact and we can have an initial, no obligation telephone chat to discuss.

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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