Be Proactive, Not Reactive, To Preserve Force Majeure Rights Regarding The Coronavirus

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NOW is the time to consider the potential force majeure impacts associated with the pandemic Coronavirus.

March 30, 2020
David Adelstein - Florida Construction Legal Updates

If you are involved in construction, NOW is the time to consider the potential force majeure impacts associated with the pandemic Coronavirus. Things are beginning to drastically change on a minute-by-minute basis. From travel restrictions, to the suspension or cancellation of events on an international level, to company-wide policies and restrictions, the global uncertainty has led to the possibility that a force majeure delay will occur. Thinking otherwise is not being proactive. The Coronavirus, and the impacts / delays associated therewith, is beyond anyone’s control. Due to the uncertainty, it is hard to fathom at this time a reasonable challenge to someone’s reaction to this concern or their companywide response to the concern.

    If you are a contractor, subcontractor, or even a supplier, my suggestions would be as follows:
  1. Revisit your contracts and see what type of force majeure language it has – anything relating to delays beyond your control or epidemics;
  2. Examine to see whether you have a basis for additional compensation AND additional time;
  3. Examine what type of notice you are required to provide for force majeure events;
  4. Be proactive – send notice now of the potentiality that this pandemic can impact / delay the job –no one should take offense to this letter as this pandemic has impacted all walks of life;
  5. If an impact occurs, send follow-up notice accordingly to ensure rights under the contract are preserved; and
  6. For future contracts, incorporate language that specifically addresses epidemics and pandemics now that the occurrence of this issue has become real.

Mr. Adelstein may be contacted at dma@kirwinnorris.com



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