The Change Order: An Alternative to the Handshake Agreement

$179.00

Contractors have conducted business using a handshake for years. Nevertheless, given the fact that there is hardly any construction dispute that does not involve the concept of an “extra,” it is important to understand the types of Change Orders and the common causes for their use.  This seminar will provide an overview of the change order process as well as a discussion of the legal arguments when the deal was made on a handshake or a promise instead of in writing as required by the contract. This will include sample provisions and key case law.

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Event Details

Webinar Date

Webinar Time

Course Type

Original Date Of Course

Course Instructor

Kelly M. Davis, Esq.

General Credits

2

Course Description

Contractors have conducted business using a handshake for years. Nevertheless, given the fact that there is hardly any construction dispute that does not involve the concept of an “extra,” it is important to understand the types of Change Orders and the common causes for their use.  This seminar will provide an overview of the change order process as well as a discussion of the legal arguments when the deal was made on a handshake or a promise instead of in writing as required by the contract. This will include sample provisions and key case law.

Principles

  • What is a Change Order?  
  • Can an Owner require a Change Order when it has not been agreed to?  
  • What are the key differences between a constructive change and a cardinal change?  
  • What is the difference between a disruption and delay claim?  
  • What are some common causes for a Change Order?  
  • What are the legal arguments to aid in payment when a Change Order is not in the format required by the parties’ contract?  
  • Common Questions when dealing with Change Orders

Syllabus

  1. Introduction 
  2. What is a Change Order 
    • Definition 
    • Only applies to a fixed price contract 
    • 3 Types of Change Orders 
  3. What is the “Changes Clause?” (Owner Decides) 
    • AIA Example 
    • Change Order vs. Termination for Convenience 
  4. What is a “Constructive Change?” (Contractor Decides) 
    • Examples 
    • Constructive Change Directive – Definition 
      • AIA Example 
      • Options
  5. What is a “Cardinal Change?”  
    • Case law examples 
    • Limit on what can require to change 
  6. Disruption vs. Delay Claims 
    • What is Disruption?  Definition 
      • Productivity 
        • How do you identify the cause for decreased productivity
    • What are Delay Claims?  
  7. What are some common causes for Change Orders?  
    • Unforseen Site Conditions 
      • Changed Conditions Clause – AIA Example
      • Site Inspection Clause
      • Disclaimer or reliance clause – 
        • Cases that uphold 
        • Cases that deny (due to justifiable reliance) – 3 types
    • Building Code Compliance 
    • Building Inspector Changes 
    • Owner’s Superior Knowledge 
    • The “Changeaholic” Owner 
    • Hyper Technical Inspection 
    • Accelerating Critical Path 
      • “Construction Acceleration” 
      • “No damage for Delay” Clause 
    • Increase in cost of Labor and Materials after Contract is Signed 
    • Drawings that do not work 
      • “Latent Defect” Definition and Examples 
    • Ambiguous Drawings 
  8. Exceptions to Change Order Requirements in the Contract 
    • Waiver and Estoppel
    • Prior Breach of Contract 
    • Quantum Meruit 
      • “Reasonable Value” 
    • Oral Agreement 
    • Promissory Estoppel 
    • Equitable Estoppel
  9. Common Questions
    • Must I use their form?  
      • See Waiver and Estoppel argument
    • Can I refuse to do extra work if the change order form is not signed?  
      • What is the duty to proceed with work?  (See Changes Clause – Duty to proceed)
      • Limited Exception
      • How this relates to a smaller project 
    • What happens if I waive my claims in the Change Order?  
    • Does the Court look at equity and fairness?  
    • Who usually wins?  

Instructor

Kelly M. Davis, Esq.

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