December 2018

In this issue we investigate how the new retentions regime stacked up  in its first court case, in the Wellington High Court. We look at the new NEC4 Alliance Contract, trends in Asian leisure and hospitality, liquidated damages and receivables projects, and ground condition clauses. On page 20 we feature Derek Firth’s follow up to his article on problems in the construction industry that was featured in our last issue  (see BuildLaw issue 33)

In ‘Case in Brief’ Michael Taylor and Michelle Mau discuss the recent High Court ruling in Ministry of Education v H Construction North Island Limited [2018] NZHC 871.  This case shows the court’s willingness to find that builders owe duties of care in negligence as well as contractual duties.  This matters because there is often a longer time period within which the client can bring a claim for negligence.  A builder wishing to avoid this outcome should use very clear language in the contract.


  • Retentions Regime wilts under scrutiny in first court case
  • Alliancing: What does the new NEC4 Alliance Contract have to offer?
  • Case in Brief: Ministry of Education v H Construction North Island Limited [2018] NZHC 871 
  • Construction Industry Woes – A Follow Up 
  • Trends in Asian Leisure and Hospitality Developments – Managing Construction Risks 
  • Liquidated Damages and Receivables Projects 
  • The Devil’s in the Detail: Ground Conditions Clauses Trumped by Tender Documentation
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