Construction Law/Contractor's claim


I am working as Resident Engineer in Bulgaria. The project is based on Yellow Book edition 1999. My question is: Can I reject the Contractor’s claim on the grounds of the following information:

Contractor’s claim: When the Contrator made excavation on construction site he discovered different sub-surface conditions. They are different from the Employer’s data for sub-surface conditions given at Tender Stage. The Contractor submited a claim for extension of the time and additional costs.

In addition, in the particular conditions of Contract the Employer stated that the information given as part of the tender documents is ´for information only´and the Employer is no responsible for it. Furthermore, in the Employers requirements it is stated that  there will be a necessity for additional geotechnical surveys.

Best regards


Dear Boyko,

Thank you for your question.

Yes, of course you can, question is, do you have grounds for that?!

Under described situation, I believe that almost any DAB, if not all, would uphold Contractor's position, i.e. Employer can not simply rely on provisions of Sub-Clause 4.10 [Site Data] and give no matter what to Tenderers, expect sound offers and get rid of any responsibility.

As well, I am absolutely positive that a lawyer can easily demonstrate that ´for information only´, under tendering conditions, is s solid enough ground for Tenderers to have relied upon.

As such, yes, you can always reject Contractor's claim, but sure enough, they will come back with it and eventually find yourself in a dispute adjudication.

Under that circumstance, I believe that best advise you can give to the Employer, is to sit down with the Contractor, as per Sub-Clause 3.5 [Determinations], "in an endeavour to reach agreement".

If they will not agree, you will have to proceed with issuing a Determination and you will have to explain the grounds of your eventual rejection. Which under described situation, I do not find easy.

Trust that answer your query, good luck and contractual wisdom in making your decision.

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