Construction Arbitration

When a dispute becomes unresolvable through amicable means, we are experts at each stage of the dispute escalation process, calls on on-demand bonds, assessment of delay and disruption claims and additional payment claims. Our team of construction, arbitration and litigation lawyers seamlessly ensures that we not only win our construction disputes but also are successful in the enforcement of arbitration awards.

Construction arbitration is our niche. It intersects with our specialised selective legal disciplines and market sectors focus.

Experienced in successfully representing the players in the life cycle of construction projects in the UAE, including the notable developers, contractors, sub-contractors, architects, design teams, project managers, engineers and consultants in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

We pursue and defend claims for variations, delays, payment and termination issues.

Our firm understands the prevailing local issues of UAE construction market and customs.  From grandiose amendments to standard contracts, unrealistic allocation of risks, internal commercial pressures, we handle what that contributes to a surge of disputes in the UAE.

Urgent attachments and Freezing orders: Bonds and Guarantees

Services to players involved in the life cycle of construction project will be incomplete without managing risks of liquidation of guarantees, and obtain freezing orders to prevent a party from removing or dealing with bonds and guarantees,

We have a 24/7 crises management model. Market integrations and business without borders cannot be bound by time and space.

Delay Claims

  • EOT claims vs. liquidated damages,
  • Application of for time limit for submitting notice of claims under FIDIC form of contract;
  • sufficiency of the of particulars of claim (quality and detail);
  • time of the alleged delaying event vs. time and duration of its impact; and
  • method of delay analysis, reliability and sufficiency of contemporaneous records and other evidence.

Technical Approach

In providing an initial evaluation of excusable or non-excusable delays we study and interpret the CPM program schedules, identify critical activities, understand the preparation of progress schedules – the type of measurement, availability and accuracy of the data, and the system of record, action plans.

Experienced in front-end construction including drafting and negotiating particular conditions of the FIDIC standard conditions of contract Red book and White book (professional services) for a more balanced allocation of risks.

  • EPC contracts for oil and gas facilities (upstream) and water supply plants.
  • bespoke government contracts for building urban developments (parks and recreational public facilities).
  • civil engineering contracts for commercial and residential projects.

Our Construction Experience in the UAE

Advising a Belgian/South Korea contractor JV contesting a pre-arbitration freezing order by Abu Dhabi courts preventing the liquidation of a subcontractor’s on-demand performance guarantee of AED 99m.

Advised and successfully obtained nullification of an arbitration award of AED 68m concerning a dispute involving the construction of a water and waste treatment plant arbitral award on grounds of serious procedural irregularities in the conduct of the arbitrator.

Representing a government body in an ICC construction arbitration in defending and seeking counter-claims of AED 199m. The dispute involved under-scoping of works vs. consultants inability to procure the agreed Estidama Pearl Rating, an integral feature of the government’s project.

Our lawyers acted for a regional oil exploration and drilling firm in a dispute over non-payment of fees, standby rates, demobilization costs, drilling a new well.

Advising Abu Dhabi’s largest oil & gas company in an arbitration dispute exceeding AED 700m project to accommodate and construct utilities for offshore oil exploration activities 800 miles the coast of Abu Dhabi.

We advised the owner on claims for disruption, delays and variations. We defended global claims, proved under-bidding, delays in interim submissions on EOT and compensation; incomplete and unsubstantiated claims; inefficient bidding process and documentation related omissions.

Representing a major real estate developer in Dubai in an arbitration dispute over the construction of a high rise building. Defended and successfully dismissed contractor’s claims over valuation of the final accounts, valuation of contractor’s work complicated as a result of the factual backdrop: contractor’s withdrawal and inability to perform the contract; parties’ mutual termination of the contract for all works except the use of equipment and machinery and site maintenance; and agreement to make direct payments to sub-contractors.

Pre-arbitration advice to a sub-contractor on the interpretation and application of a bespoke variation clause, including the scope or work vs. variation in fixed-fee contracts, claim and valuation procedure under the contract, and the extent of client’s performance obligations failing an agreement on price.

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