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Adjudication, interim valuations and final account

Building Law Monthly

Adjudication, interim valuations and final account

In Essential Living (Greenwich) Ltd v Elements (Europe) Ltd [2022] EWHC 1400 (TCC), O’Farrell J held that a decision of an adjudicator in relation to the interim valuation of the works was not binding on the parties for the purpose of determining the Final Trade Contract Sum. The two disputes were not the same or substantially the same. However, it was held not to follow from this that the decision in the earlier adjudication was no longer relevant. To the extent that the adjudicator had determined a dispute as to any contractual entitlement to a variation, or its value, that decision was binding on the parties for the purpose of the Final Trade Contract Sum. This conclusion underlines the need to examine with care the matters decided in the earlier adjudication. Such an examination raises matters of “fact and degree” which are not suitable for resolution by way of a “general declaration”. It was therefore held to be a matter for the construction manager, when carrying out his duties under the contract, to consider all of the evidence put before him in relation to the disputed items in the final account and to determine whether it is a matter that was decided in the previous adjudication in which case it continued to remain binding on the parties.

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