Building and construction law


Building and construction law is the complex structure of legislation and case law which deals with construction. Perhaps more than any other area of law, building and construction law epitomises the complexities of contract law.

There is a significant number of lawyers and legal professionals which specialise not only in building and construction law, but in specific areas within that such as project finance law, building litigation and planning permission applications. The reason so many different areas of expertise are needed is because the field of construction commonly creates disputes.

One of the most interesting legal aspects to come out of building and construction law is the contract-law issue of economic duress. Under contract law a contract is not legally binding on a party if that party entered into the contract under duress. The relatively new concept of economic duress means one party to a contract is not allowed to extort another into agreeing to terms by putting unfair economic pressure on that party. For example: a building contractor agrees a contract to build stalls which the client intends to let out during a trade event. A few days before beginning the work the contractor informs the client that the building work will not take place unless the client pays additional sums. The client, which already has contracts with other companies to let the stalls and therefore will have serious financial liabilities if the building work does not go ahead, agrees to pay more at this stage. It would be held by the courts that in such a case the agreement of the client was a result of economic duress and that the extra sum paid be subtracted from the total.

If you are experiencing a dispute which is affected by building and construction law, it is vital that you see a professional in order to better understand your legal position.

If you would like to obtain legal advice on building and construction law, Caven can put you in touch with a local Construction Solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding local Construction Solicitors please call us on 08001 221 2299 or complete the web-form above.

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