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So Much for Experience ...

It is common to see language incorporated into contracts for design services or construction, to the effect that the service provider will exercise the "skill, expertise, care and diligence" of a person "experienced in connection with a project of similar size, value, complexity and quality to the Project". Several examples can be found in the KC RC conditions. In Burford NW3 v. Brian Warwicker Partnership plc, a Court was called upon to consider whether this imposed a higher standard of care than the usual reasonable skill and care test. The Court concluded it did not. The reasoning was that under the reasonable skill and care test a professional who undertakes a task is required (absent contrary indication) to exercise the skill of a reasonably competent member of the profession performing that task with reasonable skill and care. It therefore seems experience does not matter!

Lovells Newsletter
June 2005

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