Kings College London has just published a Report “2022 Construction Adjudication in the United Kingdom: Tracing trends and guiding reform” which is a very good snapshot of current trends.

Some key outcomes are:
• between May 2021 and April 2022 there were 1,903 Adjudication Referrals. That means there were 3,806 organisations in dispute in that period.
• there are 541 registered adjudicators in the UK.
• the most common value of disputes was in the range of £125k and £500k.
• the survey identified 29 different causes of disputes.
• these ranged from inadequate contract administration, client changes, exaggerated claims, lack of competence of project participants, adversarial culture, unclear risk allocation, inadequate contract documentation, inadequate design documentation, unrealistic cost targets, poor communications, unrealistic tender pricing, clints lack of information, inappropriate payment mechanisms.
• the pandemic made no difference to the number of disputes
• Adjudicators fees ranged from £8k-£23k.

So, what is my take away for FIS members – get things sorted out before you start on site per my comments in earlier Blogs; if you buy work you buy trouble; only work for good honest clients/customers; be more efficient in managing your operatives, and the financial aspects of project; use the Conflict Avoidance Process to allow early intervention into issues on site, and get them resolved.

This report was formally launched at an event in Central London on the 17-18 November – you can find out more here.

FIS Contractual and Legal Toolkit
As well as our vocal stance on unfair payment practices, FIS members can access a range of services to support them in managing the complexities of contracting and supplying products into the construction market, this includes template contracts, guidance on standard terms, support in dealing with disputes and a raft of best practice advice.

FIS publishes short blogs by its Consultant Len Bunton on contractual and commercial issues he experiences when supporting FIS members and the wider community – it is designed to help FIS Members avoid common traps and build on the FIS focus on collective experience. The blogs are published fortnightly as FIS member only content and released to SpecFinish two weeks after publication.

Len provides an initial free one hour consultation to FIS members to discuss and review specific issues and to help develop a strategy to address. Should further advice and support be necessary, thereafter then Len will agree the necessary fee levels with each FIS member.

You can find out more about FIS membership here.