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What's new in the JCT Minor Works Building Contracts 2024

14 Jun Victoria Kempthorne, senior associate in the construction team at law firm Irwin Mitchell, reviews the latest JCT contract form.

JCT has released the 2024 edition of the JCT Minor Works Building Contract family.

The JCT recommends that the Minor Works Building Contracts are used for small and less complex projects where the work is of a simple nature.  

The changes to the 2024 Minor Works Building Contracts generally reflect the changes made to the 2024 Design and Build Contract (published earlier last month), as discussed in previous posts on this site.

As with the 2024 Design and Build contracts, the new Minor Works Building Contracts have been modernised to include provisions for electronic communications and electronic execution.

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Like with the 2024 Design and Build Contract, each of the new Minor Works Building Contracts contain a new article requiring the parties to work in a co-operative and collaborative manner, in good faith and in a spirit of trust and respect.

Further similarities with the 2024 Design and Build contracts include:

  • the identification of the Building Regulations Principal Designer and Principal Contractor;
  • the printed text for the fluctuation option can be downloaded from the JCT website;
  • confirmation that liquidated damages will not be recoverable following termination;
  • changes to the definition of insolvency;
  • an enhanced design obligation and an express exclusion of a¬†fitness for purpose obligation in relation to the forms containing design obligations; and
  • new drafting on the payment due date after termination.

Unlike the 2024 Design and Build contracts, which now allow additional time and money for the discovery of asbestos, contaminated material and unexploded ordnance or epidemics, the exercise of statutory powers by the UK government and changes in law, there have not been any changes to the extension of time and loss and expense provisions in the Minor Works family. However, this is not unexpected, as the JCT states that the Minor Works Building Contracts are not suitable where detailed provisions governing extensions of time and loss and expense are needed and so the extension of time and loss and expense provisions remain very simple.

What the changes to the 2024 Minor Works Building Contracts show is that the JCT intends to make similar changes through the entire suite meaning users should hopefully not have to get used to different regimes across the various contracts

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