Ben has extensive experience in both contentious and non-contentious matters acting for a variety of participants in the construction, engineering and infrastructure industries, including contractors, principals, subcontractors, consultants and financiers. Ben has experience in drafting, reviewing and negotiating tender documentation and construction and related contracts, as well as contract administration and risk mitigation strategies during the project delivery phase. He has particular expertise in the strategic management and resolution of complex disputes, including security of payment matters, litigation and alternative dispute resolution.
Ben is a strategic advisor across the full lifecycle of a project's lifecycle, from procurement and contract administration through to dispute resolution and avoidance. He acts for contractors, subcontractors, principals, and state and local government across a variety of sectors. He has particular expertise in the strategic management and resolution of complex disputes, including mediation, statutory adjudication, litigation and arbitration. In addition to managing formal disputes, he typically help clients in four key areas:
- where completion of a project has been significantly delayed, or is otherwise in distress.
- where there is a significant defect in the works.
- working to secure (or deny) cashflow on a project. This can be via statutory adjudication, claims preparation or commercial negotiations.
- advisory work regarding risk allocation, and the merits of claims made in connection with a construction project.
Ben understands his clients' commercial drivers, having spent a year practicing in-house as lead counsel for a major Australian contractor. He prides himself on delivering commercially sensible and effective outcomes for his clients, through a strong work ethic, technical excellence and emotional intelligence.
Security of payment
Successfully acting for a major contractor making an adjudication application in excess of $24m in respect of a current Victorian PPP. The determination in this case is considered to be the highest in Victorian security of payment history.
Acting for Probuild in Supreme Court of Victoria proceedings concerning claims for liquidated damages, extensions of time and delay damages in relation to the design and construction of a AU$120m high rise apartment complex in Victoria.
Defects and insurance claims
Acting for a joint venture of two major contractors in defence of claims by the Principal for damages in excess of AU$1.1b regarding the design of a liquefied natural gas pipeline in north Queensland. This included advising on the complex array of project and party-specific professional indemnity insurance policies activated by the claims.
Acting for a major national services contractor in a dispute with an Australian government owned corporation involving complex and substantial claims for payment in excess of $150m associated with the rollout of a nationwide upgrade to telecommunications infrastructure.
Acting for a joint venture of two major contractors in relation to substantial claims for time and money associated with the design and construction of a wind farm in regional Victoria.
Security of Payments - appeal costs and reviewability of adjudication determinations in Victoria
Discussion of appeal costs and reviewability of a material error of law in the case of Radman v Open Plan.
Security of payment – the risks of a late adjudication response
A recent decision reinforces the strict confines of the judicial review process in the context of the SOP Act