Filing a delay claim during a construction project

Preparing, planning and initiating a construction project can be an exciting time, no matter the size of the project. However, whether it is a small or major construction project, there are certain steps and situations that need to be addressed by individuals and business owners in Louisiana. While it is ideal that everything goes as planned and stays on schedule, it is important to note that minute and lengthy delays could occur at various points in project. Depending on the cause of the delay and the costs and damages caused by the delay, it might be in your best interest to file a delay claim.

A delay claim is based on the period of time a project has been extended or the period of time no work has been performed on a construction project sue to circumstances that were not anticipated at the time the parties to the project entered the agreement. While there are various reasons a project could be delayed, the most common reasons include differing site conditions, changes in design, weather, defects, unavailability of labor, material or equipment and interference by the owner.

When delays occur, this forces the contractor to extend the schedule to complete the work under the contract. While the parties to the construction contract might agree to the extended time, it is likely that the delay will incur additional costs. Depending on the circumstances, this could result in disputes or even a claim for a breach in contract. Because of that, it might be important to take a further look at the cause of the delay.

In some situations, delays might involve matters beyond the control of the parties to the contract. Therefore, the delay might be labeled excusable and costs incurred will be divided between the parties. Nonetheless, if the delay is determined to be inexcusable, the contractor will likely assume the risks under the contract. This is especially true if negligence or matters that could have been prevented caused the delay.

A delayed construction project often results in damages and costs, which in turn causes disputes concerning the project and contract to emerge. In some matters, construction litigation might be the best way to resolve the matter, helping the parties remedy the situation.

Source: Corporate.FindLaw.com, “Delay Claims in Construction Cases: Common Pitfalls,” accessed on May 16, 2016

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