Construction law is a branch of law that deals with the legal aspects of building projects. It covers many aspects of the construction processes and phases, from employee disputes and contract obligations between builders and land owners through to obtaining the proper licenses to begin construction or infrastructure projects. Construction lawyers in Melbourne play a crucial role in getting construction projects off to a good start and ensuring obligations are met by all parties both during and after completion. This quick guide will discuss the ins and outs of construction law.
Construction contracts are the legal agreements between the parties involved in a building project. They set out the terms and conditions of the project, including the scope of work, the price and the schedule. Construction lawyers in Melbourne are tasked with initiating and managing these as well as employee contracts for the workers who will be performing the construction tasks. There may also be special contracts and permits that construction lawyers will need to file or oversee if special equipment must be used at a later stage of the project that could cause disruption to a residential street or road.
Tendering is the process of inviting bids from potential contractors for a construction project. This is used to select the most suitable contractor for the job, based on factors such as price, quality and experience. Every build is unique, and there is a high margin for error with any type of construction project, so it’s important that developers, project managers and architects scrutinise and critically assess any potential contractor or builder who is bidding to take on their construction project. At the end of the day, most of the liability will fall on these entities. Construction lawyers in Melbourne can help developers conduct due diligence and research on any prospective builder they’re thinking of hiring.
Construction licences are required for certain types of building work, such as demolition, asbestos removal and electrical work. Licences must be issued by the governing authority of the industry which the trade falls under. If workers are found to not possess the required licenses or their licenses are expired, developers and the workers themselves could be harshly penalised and potentially fined thousands of dollars as well as prevented from working or building for a period of time. Construction lawyers in Melbourne can help to ensure everyone who is on-site is licensed and meant to be there to mitigate any penalties or legal disturbances that could occur as a result of unlicensed personnel being present on site.
Construction disputes can arise between any of the parties involved in a building project, such as the contractor, the client, the architect or the local authority. Disputes can be about anything from the quality of the work to the payment of fees. Disputes also often arise from employees of the project, usually due to late or no payment for their work. Construction lawyers in Melbourne can help to reduce the chances of a dispute occurring by ensuring all of the correct paperwork has been filed well in advance of the project starting and checking that all legal building standards are being met.