It is not unusual for a construction contract to designate the owner’s project architect, engineer or other representative as arbiter of questions regarding contract requirements and scope of work. Are these decisions really as “final” as the contracts represent? And, what factors can the designated representative consider when making a decision?
A Florida court recently ruled that a project architect’s decision cannot be arbitrary and must be free of gross error. The architect’s decision on a subcontractor claim did not meet this standard. The architect disregarded the express language of the subcontract and interpreted the subcontract scope of work based on the contractor’s mistaken assumption when pricing and bidding the prime contract.
The other case in this issue involved a contractor’s failure to comply with the state corporation filing requirements. The lapsed corporation had no rights under the federal construction contract it had signed and no recourse against a default termination.
In an informative article written for Construction Claims Advisor, construction expert John Crane addresses weather issues that an owner needs to take into account when preparing construction documentaion and contract administration.