CIC publishes new procedure to make adjudication affordable for low value disputes

The Construction Industry Council (CIC) will publish a Low Values Disputes Model Adjudication Procedure in March 2020.

On the 18 March 2020, the Construction Industry Council (CIC) will publish a Low Values Disputes Model Adjudication Procedure (CIC LVD MAP). Adjudication is currently unaffordable to many SME's, and the CIC LVD MAP encourages the use of adjudication as a disputes resolution process where the amount in dispute is small.

The publication of the CIC LVD MAP First Edition is in response to growing construction industry concerns about the increasing complexity and prohibitive costs of adjudication. The purpose is to provide a simple and cost-effective procedure to made adjudication more accessible for SME's and others involved in lower value claims – it is aimed at disputes where claims are for £50,000 or less, and the issues in dispute are relatively uncomplicated. Another objective is to allow newly qualified Adjudicators to gain experience deciding Low Value Disputes.

It was developed by a Working Group Chaired by Martin Burns, RICS Head of ADR Research and Development, and which included representatives from other key industry bodies such as the Adjudication Society, CIC, CEDR, ICE and the RICS.

The CIC LVD MAP complies with the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 as amended by Part 8 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 (the "Construction Act").

The new adjudication procedure is the result of two consultations with the construction industry and other stakeholders, from which comprehensive and informed feedback was considered. The document sets out a streamlined adjudication procedure for Low Value Disputes and, by linking the Adjudicator's fee to the amount claimed, provides certainty as to how much the Adjudicator will be paid for making an Adjudicator's Decision.

By including an outline timetable for the procedural stages it provides a flexible yet simple to understand approach to the key elements of the adjudication process.

Harry Pangli MCIAT, who represented CIAT on this, commented: "The CIC Low Value Dispute Map is a welcomed addition to the construction industry and a positive step forward in providing cost certainty to SME’s on adjudicators fees on claims below £50,000. The new adjudication procedure redefines a balance and promotes cost efficiency to those in building projects that require disputes to be dealt with quickly. This new initiative runs alongside fixed fee adjudication services offered by law firms for legal representation, such as Hardwicke."

The CIC LVD MAP is supported by ten Participating Adjudicator Nominating Bodies (ANBs). Participating ANBs maintain their own panel of qualified adjudicators who will apply the procedure fee and expenses scale as set out in the Schedule 1.

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