Building & Construction

Building & Construction

Our building and construction lawyers Perth regularly advise clients in relation to building and construction matters and disputes ranging from home building contracts through to large scale commercial, industrial and mining projects.

We provide constructive advice in plain English, from contract formation (including tenders) to dispute resolution procedures, including adjudications and arbitration.

At the formation stage, we work closely with our clients to understand their business (including their risk profile) in order to draft and negotiate contracts that provide certainty and a degree of comfort.

Once work begins, there are certain types of disputes that arise over and over again including alleged defects, where works are variations (especially in the context of lump sum contracts), EOT claims, the application of liquidated damages and payment disputes.  If and when they do arise, our lawyers draw on their knowledge and experience to provide strategies for achieving a positive outcome.  We will assist you to understand your rights and your responsibilities so that you can make your own fully informed decisions about the conduct of your matter.

For example, when payment disputes arise, you may be able to submit the payment dispute to adjudication under the Construction Contracts Act 2004 (WA).  The adjudication process is based on the principle “pay first, argue later” and involves an independent adjudicator determining the amount that they believe is due and payable.  At Fletcher Law, we can assist you to understand the process as well as act on your behalf in relation to the preparation or defence of adjudication applications.

Many contracts will include a provision that any disputes that cannot be resolved through mediation go to arbitration.  In Western Australia the arbitration process is governed by the Commercial Arbitration Act 2012 (which is based on model international laws).  The function of the arbitrator is to determine the dispute much in the same way that a judge would.  The arbitrator’s decision is final, subject to limited rights of appeal.  We can help you navigate the arbitration process to a successful outcome.

Our Perth building and construction lawyers have also acted for clients in relation to a wide range of home building disputes under the Home Building Contracts Act 1991 as well as providing representation before the Building Commission (this role was formerly undertaken by the Building Disputes Tribunal) and any necessary applications to the State Administrative Tribunal.

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The SAT – reluctant interstate traveller

7th September 2018

Since its inauguration in 2005, the jurisdiction of the State Administrative Tribunal in Western Australia (SAT) has expanded exponentially to include more than 154 pieces of statutory legislation. The appeal of the SAT as a less complex, more informal, less procedurally stringent and expedited manner of dispute resolution has gained momentum and traction among the... read more

Planning approval conditions – are they valid?

24th August 2018

The recent decision of Deputy President, Judge Parry, of the State Administrative Tribunal in Prosser v City of Bunbury [2018] WASAT 41 reminds us of the importance for developers to scrutinise the planning approval conditions imposed, as one or more of the conditions may be unlawful. Local Government may impose various types of planning approval... read more

Riaan Piek

26th March 2018

Introducing Riaan Piek, Litigation Counsel, who recently joined the firm to bolster Fletcher Law’s expanding litigation capacity with his 20 years’ experience as a lawyer advising on risk and the prevention, minimisation, control, balance and management of its consequences. Whilst Riaan has been a commercial litigator for most of his professional life, he has a... read more