Direct Agreements – Back from the dead?

In what will be a relief for contractors, the Court of Appeal has overturned the High Court decision, and held that payments made to contractors by financiers pursuant to a direct agreement are not voidable transactions recoverable by a liquidator. While some may see this as a return to the previous position there are a…

Mainzeal – End of an era (Receivership)

Mainzeal was one of the largest construction companies in New Zealand when it was put into receivership in 2012, liquidation followed shortly afterwards. Fast-forward five years and the receivership stage process has just been completed with the Receivers retiring on 15 May 2017. The completion of the Receivership means that the secured creditors (bank) and…

Are your estimates accurate?

John Green, founder and director of the Building Disputes Tribunal, a building and construction dispute resolution service provider in New Zealand, has spoken out in a recent article about the unfair and ‘draconian’ nature of many residential construction contracts. In his opinion, residential contracts are skewed in favour of builders for two main reasons: The contracts…

Court of Appeal rejects claim of negligent misstatement for code compliance certificate

Last week the Court of Appeal released their decision for the case of Invercargill City Council v Southland Indoor Leisure Centre Charitable Trust. This case arose from the collapse of the roof of the Invercargill community courts in 2010. The Trust, who owns the building, claimed the Council was negligent in issuing a code compliance…

CAMERON BURNELL/ FAIRFAX NZ

Aitchisons awarded costs in Fencegate

The long running Fencegate saga appears to be nearing a conclusion with the Aitchisons (those whose view had been blocked by the structure) being awarded $72,500 in costs. In making this ruling Environment Court Judge Dwyer held that the action of the Walmsleys in erecting the structure and the presence of the structure were offensive…

‘On demand’ no more

We often come across the sentiment that ‘on demand’ bonds provide an absolute entitlement to security, no questions asked. It is becoming clearer and clearer that this is no longer the case. Occasionally, a Beneficiary will attempt to place a call on the bond even though the Contractor is not strictly in default of the…

Scam hits construction industry

Be on the lookout for a new scam that is targeting the residential building industry. The scammers, believed to be based in Nigeria, have hacked builders’ email accounts and are sending bogus invoices to clients, with instructions to pay the money into a different account than usual. The scam has claimed thousands of dollars off…