One of the most challenging claims to prove is a lost productivity or inefficiency claim. There is an alluring appeal to these claims because there are oftentimes intriguing facts and high damages. But the allure of the presentation of the claim does not compensate for the actual burden of proof in proving the lost productivity or inefficiency claim, which will require an expert. And they really are challenging to prove.
Don’t take it from me. A recent Federal Claims Court opinion, Nova Group/Tutor-Saliba v. U.S., 2022 WL 815826, (Fed.Cl. 2022), that I also discussed in the preceding article, exemplifies this point.
To determine lost productivity or inefficiency, the claimant’s expert tried three different methodologies.
First, the expert looked at industry standard lost productivity factors such as those promulgated by the Mechanical Contractor’s Association. However, the claimant was not a mechanical contractor and there is a bunch of subjectivity involved when using these factors. The expert decided not to use such industry standard factors correctly noting they provide value when you are looking at a potential impact prospectively, but once you incur actual damages and have real data, it is not an accurate measure.