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It is some 10 years since my firm first published a guide to the avoidance of professional indemnity claims. That guide took the form of a set of notes distilled from the experience of our clients and of the problems they had encountered. We have updated that original paper from time to time, and its latest version now reads as follows: M. Griffiths
The relationship between a client and a professional advisor can be a delicate and complex one. A client has a duty to appoint an advisor who has appropriate competence on fair and reasonable terms and should understand the difference between buying advice and buying a manufactured article. The advisor, for his part, should try and stand in his client’s shoes, should look beyond the mechanics of the job to the interface with anything on which the project might impinge, and should advise impartially. That, at least, is the theory! J.A. Waller
The past 2 decades have seen many changes in the demands made on the construction industry and the ways its work is tackled. Some have been to the benefit of the industry and its clients; some have not. Important among the latter is the erosion of trust and confidence between many clients and their consultants: happily, there are exceptions. A rash of failures, commercial and other pressures, risk aversion, pursuit of cost effectiveness (sometimes with too little regard for quality), have all contributed to increased litigation and, perhaps more importantly, to the threat of litigation, to risk transfer, and to the increased cost of professional indemnity insurance, now temporarily abated. Professor D. Bishop