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Topics: Change Management, Communications Management, Construction
The contract documents are complementary-
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In a situation where the contract term clearly states that the contract documents are complementary,it becomes an uphill task for the contractor to resolve conflicts/dispute amicably .Please share your experience.
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Contract Documents are Complementary ? Never ever heard this before. If they are so, then why is there a contract to start with.
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1 reply by Chandrashekhar Thatte
Feb 16, 2017 1:00 AM
Chandrashekhar Thatte
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Rami,despite such contract terms(Complementary) giving scope to advantageous misinterpretation by both the parties to the contract,the Contractor (helpless and ignorant of the consequences) does enter into the contract.I have come across some instances ,in India, where such contract term does exist.Developed/Advanced countries,by and large, are fortunate to have well balanced contract terms.With out the Order of Preference,differing/contradicting terms in the contract document comprising of bid document,Letter of Intent,work Order,agreement ,BOQ,GCC,SCC,drawings,specifications etc. are subject to exploitation by either party leading to avoidable execution constraints/dispute .
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Complement to what?

You usually have a sequence of documents that are relevant: statement of work, project charter, project requirements, .... Usually, you exhaust all previous avenues before falling back on the contract for resolving issues.
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I agree with Rami. This can be very tricky. I have been a party to a contract where specific terms related to another contract were invoked, however I believe this should be avoided unless absolutely necessary. Issues, conflicts, and arguments will arise out of a situation where there is ambiguity or multiple paths to resolution.
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I am not a lawyer but if it is stated that the contract documents should be mutually complementary in the construction project, it might be understood as collaborative approaches to proceed to the intended results or products.

There could be two types of conflicts that one might be from the different stipulations between various contract documents( or even in a same contract document), another might be from the different interpretations by contract parties even for the same clauses of contract documents.

The first case of conflicts between different stipulations might be necessary to be understood whether it should be resolved by contract documents' order of precedence or mutually complementary.

For example, if one item is deemed to be inclusive in payment schedule or BOQs (its priority is low) but there are no stipulations on drawings and technical specifications (their priority are high), we, in a collaborative manner, should resolve the this conflict using concept of "mutually complementary" for the intended results or product by the client.
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Purely in the context of IT Contracts For our Organization the following are mandatory :-
Vendor Quality Assurance from Quality Team to approve that the vendor can supply goods or services to the organization. This may include Audits, Quality Questionnaires, review of development and testing methodologies
IT security to perform a full security assessment
Vendor to sign Non Disclosure agreement with the Organization
Contracts Manager and Legal Team to review the contracts and to agree on terms and conditions with the Vendor mutually and sign off.
Contracts manager to review financial proposal with a fine tooth comb.
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Complementary to what? It need to be specify

What I have seen is precedence of various part of contract over one an other, including the tender documents and other external document such as norms.
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Feb 15, 2017 11:40 AM
Replying to Rami Kaibni
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Contract Documents are Complementary ? Never ever heard this before. If they are so, then why is there a contract to start with.
Rami,despite such contract terms(Complementary) giving scope to advantageous misinterpretation by both the parties to the contract,the Contractor (helpless and ignorant of the consequences) does enter into the contract.I have come across some instances ,in India, where such contract term does exist.Developed/Advanced countries,by and large, are fortunate to have well balanced contract terms.With out the Order of Preference,differing/contradicting terms in the contract document comprising of bid document,Letter of Intent,work Order,agreement ,BOQ,GCC,SCC,drawings,specifications etc. are subject to exploitation by either party leading to avoidable execution constraints/dispute .
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1 reply by Rami Kaibni
Feb 16, 2017 1:24 AM
Rami Kaibni
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Thanks for ellaborating Chandrashekhar ... Now I understand what is going on.
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Feb 16, 2017 1:00 AM
Replying to Chandrashekhar Thatte
...
Rami,despite such contract terms(Complementary) giving scope to advantageous misinterpretation by both the parties to the contract,the Contractor (helpless and ignorant of the consequences) does enter into the contract.I have come across some instances ,in India, where such contract term does exist.Developed/Advanced countries,by and large, are fortunate to have well balanced contract terms.With out the Order of Preference,differing/contradicting terms in the contract document comprising of bid document,Letter of Intent,work Order,agreement ,BOQ,GCC,SCC,drawings,specifications etc. are subject to exploitation by either party leading to avoidable execution constraints/dispute .
Thanks for ellaborating Chandrashekhar ... Now I understand what is going on.
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Can you quantify the cost to the project due to these contracts issues? If you are able to show management that the written document allows for delays, issues, and risk can you argue a case for modifying the agreement or writing a new template for future agreements?
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1 reply by Chandrashekhar Thatte
Feb 17, 2017 2:05 AM
Chandrashekhar Thatte
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The conflict/dispute has a cost element which is quantifiable and the contractor, in case of genuine claim, is able to demonstrate the impact on his planned/budgeted project cost by submitting cost analysis and supporting evidences .He is also in a position to argue his case and request for amendment to contract to include such additional cost . But some Clients have the tendency to take shelter under the such contract terms(Complementary) to argue/defend their stand to reject the claim.Thus it becomes an uphill task for the contractor to resolve conflicts/dispute amicably.
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Feb 16, 2017 10:18 AM
Replying to Michael Ziyadeh
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Can you quantify the cost to the project due to these contracts issues? If you are able to show management that the written document allows for delays, issues, and risk can you argue a case for modifying the agreement or writing a new template for future agreements?
The conflict/dispute has a cost element which is quantifiable and the contractor, in case of genuine claim, is able to demonstrate the impact on his planned/budgeted project cost by submitting cost analysis and supporting evidences .He is also in a position to argue his case and request for amendment to contract to include such additional cost . But some Clients have the tendency to take shelter under the such contract terms(Complementary) to argue/defend their stand to reject the claim.Thus it becomes an uphill task for the contractor to resolve conflicts/dispute amicably.
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1 reply by Cris Casey
Feb 17, 2017 9:17 AM
Cris Casey
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Thanks Chandra. I think you hit the nail on the head.
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