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NEC3 questions #2 – How is ambiguity in the Works Information dealt with?

In this series titled “NEC3 questions”, Steven Evans addresses the most common questions asked about the NEC3 contract.

How is ambiguity in the Works Information dealt with?

Referring to the Works Information Guidance issued by NEC Contracts, the

Works Information should be a complete and precise statement of the Employer’s requirements. If it is not, there is a risk that the Contactor will interpret it differently from the Employer’s intention.

From that, it is clear the risk of incorrect or ambiguous Works Information lies with the Employer.

The procedure in the event of such ambiguity is set out at clause 17.1:

The Project Manager or the Contractor notifies the other as soon as either becomes aware of an ambiguity or inconsistency in or between the documents which are part of this contract. The Project Manager gives an instruction resolving the ambiguity or inconsistency.

That instruction is a compensation event under 60.1(1) except for a

change to the Works Information provided by the Contractor for his design which is made either at his request or to comply with other Works Information provided by the Employer.

In summary, ambiguity in the Works Information is the Employer’s risk and corrected by way of a compensation event.

For more information please contact us.

Written by Steven Evans who is a construction contract expert with particular specialism in NEC3, and is an NEC accredited tutor.

This article is for general information purposes only and should not be relied upon in any specific situation without appropriate legal advice. If you require that advice or wish to discuss any of the issues raised in this article, please contact us.