Art Consultancy Ltd v Navera Trading Ltd

The adjudicator's decision in the contractor's favour should be enforced by the court on the basis of rejecting the employer's objections to the enforcement of the decision that the contract was not in writing
 
ART CONSULTANCY LTD v NAVERA TRADING LTD

Technology and Construction Court
His Honour Judge Peter Coulson QC
31 May 2007
 
Judge Coulson held that the adjudicator's decision in the contractor's favour should be enforced by the court on the basis of rejecting the employer's objections to the enforcement of the decision, namely that the JCT Minor Works Form did not apply to the construction works with the result that the contract was not in writing and that even if the JCT Minor Works Form did apply to the construction works, the contract was still not in writing by reason of the contractor's design obligations and other provisions not having been included in the (written) contract.
 
As to the JCT Minor Works Form not applying to the construction works, this form of contract governed the works carried out insofar as (a) it was made clear in the tender documents sent to the contractor that the successful tenderer would be required to enter in a JCT Minor Works Form of building contract (b) the employer's architect made it clear in his evidence to the court that the tender documents prepared by him were prepared on the basis of the JCT Minor Works Form (c) shortly after the contractor started work on site the contractor was sent a copy of the JCT Minor Works Form with all the relevant provisions completed by the employer's architect on its behalf and (d) the contractor carried out the works in accordance with the JCT Minor Works Form.
 
As to the contractor's design obligations and other provisions not having been included in the JCT Minor Works Form (a) the objection was based on the assumptions that the design element of the parties' agreement had to be part of the JCT Minor Works Form and that the failure to include the design element of the works carried out by the contractor in the contract in the JCT Minor Works Form meant that the (composite) contract was not in writing (b) there was no evidence that the parties intended that the JCT Minor Works Form would include the (earlier) design package and the evidence given by the employer's architect was that the tender documentation he prepared did not include the design works and (c) it was not the case that everything had to be in one package.
Download