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Our alphabet of construction law reaches its second construction contract. This time we are looking at the Joint Contracts Tribunal standard forms of contract.
Established in 1931 between the Royal Institute of British Architects and the National Federation of Building Trades Employers, the JCT is now comprised of seven members representing the UK construction industry. This is important as the suite of contracts is used on up to 70% of all UK construction projects.
The JCT has evolved through many editions. As the construction industry has developed, it has looked to address many of the issues that occur on a construction project. Recent changes to the JCT include the addition of BIM clauses as well as one change that Limeslade contributed to: the change to gender-neutral language. Due to its popularity, most parties to a construction contract will be familiar with the form.
An unamended JCT contract looks to allocate risk fairly between the employer and the contractor. However, often it is necessary to amend the contract in order to take into account the specifics of the project.
Additionally, it sets out dispute resolution procedures, so that should things go wrong, the parties can resolve issues.