Construction Contracts

Particular Specification (PS)

Contractually the provisions contained in the Particular Specification and the Drawings shall prevail over the provisions contained in the General / Standard Specification.

Preparation of Specifications

Specification is a set of documents that describes the details of each trade of works and set out the requirements for quality of materials, workmanship, and method of tests, sequence of works, stages of inspection, acceptance criteria and any other obligations of the contractor that are not covered by the Conditions of Contract.

When drafting the specification, it is important that the clauses should be written in good and simple English so that the site staff can readily understand what the requirements are. Absolute care

must be taken to avoid having conflicts with the other contract documents or otherwise may trigger out disputes during or after completion of work.

General / Standard Specification (GS / SS)

Contractually the provisions contained in the General Specification shall prevail over the provisions contained in the standard documents such as the British Standards ( BS ) , British Standard Codes of Practice ( CP ) , American Society for Testing and Materials ( ASTM ) Standards , etc .

Preparation of Drawings

The set of tender drawings should provide all the details of proposed works that are required by the contract; however this is always not practicable owing to many reasons. One of the main reasons is that when time is of an essence, the client may want to commence the project within short time such that the client’s engineer in fact does not have sufficient time to finish up the detailed design, and sometimes even working concurrently after the work is commenced.

Nevertheless the incomplete tender drawings will most likely influence the preparation, execution and cost of work which in turn will consequently affect the tendered price. Failure to provide sufficient and correct information in the tender drawings will unavoidably lead to follow up disputes and claims.

Types of Contracts

All-in Contract

This type of contract is sometimes known as “package contract” or “turnkey contract” or “design and build contract” and can be on lump sum basis or re-measurement basis. The client or its engineer will set out the requirements in board or particular terms and invite the tenderers (usually pre-qualified) to submit a comprehensive proposal for the design and construction of the project.

Lump Sum Contract

This type of contract is binding with a fixed lump sum price of which the contractor has to undertake all the works as shown on the tender drawings, bills of quantities , specifications and the terms and conditions of the contract . The quantities of works are for information only and the contractor is responsible for the assessment of all costs that it will incur throughout the contract period. The lump sum price will seldom be adjusted unless the specified tendered work is altered by formal instructions.

Re-measurement Contract

This type of contract consist detailed bills of quantities ( BoQ ) that computed from the tender drawings by the client or its engineer , however the BoQ quantity is approximate only and is not final. The tenderers will quote against each BoQ item and enter a unit rate or unit price to build up the total contract price on basis of those BoQ quantities .During the construction period ,

the actual quantity of works executed under each BoQ item will be jointly measured and valued at the quoted rate for  interim payment purpose . At completion of contract, the exact quantity of works finally executed under each BoQ item will be again jointly re-measured (i.e. the final measurement) and valued at the quoted rate to evaluate the final account.

In case of instructed variation or additional works that are without basis of BoQ rate(s), the contractor can build up new rates for those works for valuation .In general, this type of contract is much fair to both the client and the contractor because the total work done is being paid on re-measurement basis and surely can eliminate a lot of disputes resulting from the grey areas of contractor’s responsibilities.

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