The global COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world forever, disrupting many industries, as well as creating unprecedented challenges that threaten many businesses. The construction industry is no different. Projects throughout the country have been adversely affected by unplanned work stoppages, delays, disruptions to the supply chain, price escalations and other unanticipated events.
It is critical that owners, developers, contractors and suppliers learn from their experiences over the past year and account for the COVID-19 pandemic when drafting and negotiating contracts for their projects.
First and foremost, parties should clearly define their rights and responsibilities to properly manage risks due to COVID-19 and its impacts. COVID-19 and other key related terms should be defined, relying on the CDC and state governments for guidance, to eliminate any uncertainties. The contract should also identify executive orders, guidelines and regulations that have been issued concerning COVID-19 by states, municipalities and other authorities that have jurisdiction where the project is located.
Reprinted courtesy of Frederick E. Hedberg, Construction Executive, a publication of Associated Builders and Contractors. All rights reserved.
Mr. Hedberg may be contacted at email@example.com