Infrastructure: Bob can build it

Ian Green and James Hall analyse the implications of the Spending Review and Autumn Statement 2015 for housing ‘The government has signalled its commitment to long-term housing investment and the building of new homes appears to remain at the core of government policy.’George Osborne’s Spending Review and Autumn Statement 2015 promises to double the housing …
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Negotiation: Standing on principles

Dr Sam De Silva highlights the merits of a key commercial principles document ‘The aim of a key commercial principles document should be to establish enough agreement between the parties to move into the latter stages of deal shaping.’Given the complexity of strategic outsourcing contracts, once the parties have reached agreement on principle deal points, …
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Contracting: Limiting the damage

Clare Auty and Doris Woo examine the application of penalty clauses in procurement contracts ‘Although the penalty rule still stands, it is clear… that establishing a valid legitimate interest is effectively a trump card for allowing a broad spectrum of financial remedies in properly negotiated contracts.’The use of liquidated damages clauses and service credits, such …
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Planning: A public estate

Peter Kershaw pinpoints the arrival of a new era for major development opportunities ‘The strengthening of the government’s narrative towards public sector land sales suggests that this could well be a watershed moment of opportunity for any investor, developer or public sector land owner.’A key point I often find myself stressing in discussions with anybody …
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Construction: Pay now argue later

Matthew Collingwood-Cooper and Mike Trodden look at the operation of pay less notices in construction contracts ‘A paying party who has failed to issue a pay less notice is left with some uncertainty as to when it is entitled to challenge the valuation of an interim account.’In Harding v Paice [2015], the Court of Appeal …
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Housing: A new home for skills

Mark Lynch considers the problems underlying the housing shortage ‘The government is, in effect, taking on the challenge of being a residential developer – that is no easy feat, and requires a skilled and well-resourced client-side workforce.’Headlines focus on the emotive issue of hard-working families being unable to afford their own homes, and the government’s …
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Mediation: Peace, love and (some) understanding

Neil Mirchandani and Alice Jowitt report on the role of mediation across the EU ‘Implementation of the Mediation Directive required bigger changes in some member states than in others. This is not surprising, given that there are major differences between member states in terms of how disputes are resolved.’The Mediation Directive (2008/52/EC, the Directive) is …
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Outsourcing: It’s good to write

Mark Lewis assesses a recent case of difficult drafting ‘All parties should consider carefully whether a termination clause contains clear steps and timelines which will be practical and fair for the parties to implement.’In BT Cornwall Ltd v Cornwall Council [2015], the High Court has ruled that Cornwall Council and others were entitled to terminate …
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