JBCC Suite of Contracts - Construction Sector Needs to Familiarise Itself with the Latest Edition of the JBCC Suite of Contracts
The JBCC Suite of Contracts are some of the most widely used contracts within the South African construction industry. The various agreements that make up the suite of contracts have become the agreements of choice for many building projects.
Edition 6.1 of the JBCC Suite of Contracts, however, is considerably different from its predecessor. This edition sees the entire format of the contracts change with the Principal Building Agreement, reduced from its previous 40 clauses to only 32 clauses. JBCC Course Leader at Alusani Skills & Training Network®, Steve du Toit, says there has been a large demand from industry for training on the latest edition.
“The format of the agreements has changed substantially. The definitions and clause headings have been changed so the agreements look very different to one another. People tend to stick to what they know, which has led to a number of contractors and companies still doing work based on Edition 5. If a project started before Edition 6 came out, then it is understandable that this version of the agreement is still being used, but people within the construction sector need to familiarise themselves with Edition 6 as soon as possible,” says du Toit.
Some of the additional changes that have been made include the elimination of what was previously known as the ’work completion phase’. In the past, there was a first phase of completion (called the ‘practical completion’ of the project), where a project could be deemed as able to be handed over for intended purposes.
Upon practical completion, the contractor would issue a works of completion list for anything that still needs to be completed on the project. There wasn’t a deadline for the contractor to complete the outstanding work, so there was often a large lapse between practical completion and works completion.
“The new edition eliminates the works completion process and the result is that the contractor now has to ensure that the work is virtually complete upon practical completion. This isn’t a problem in smaller projects, but it can lead to issues on larger projects such as shopping centres. It’s very seldom that a large project is handed over when absolutely everything is complete. In the upcoming course on the latest JBCC Suite of Contracts, I explain in detail the contractor’s responsibility and how to navigate these changes,” says du Toit.
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