construction bodenheimer herzberg legal

Complex construction projects involve numerous trades and professions. We support our clients regarding all arising legal projects.

In identifying the suitable legal framework for the individual project at stake, a differentiated approach is required:

  • Standard form contracts: Using standard form construction contracts, e.g. the international FIDIC or NEC forms, the German VOB/B form, or the English JCT or ICE forms, is advantageous from several points of view. Tested, balanced risk allocation, less bargaining – to name just a few. In practice, however, such standard forms are in most cases heavily amended. Their particular conditions containing the project-specific amendments tend to be longer than their (standard) general conditions. We at BODENHEIMER are very experienced in advising on and negotiating standard form contracts.
  • Applicable Law: Even though modern standard form contracts are lengthy documents, the applicable law will always remain relevant to some extent. Rules governing the interpretation of contracts are usually not exhaustively determined in standard forms. The governing law may also invalidate clauses under its regime of general terms and conditions. Additionally, many default statutory provisions apply because standardised contracts abstain from regulating important aspects already covered by the applicable law. As an example: FIDIC construction contracts contain no clause stating that a party in breach of a contractual obligation must pay damages to the aggrieved party. There is also no clause on limitation periods in FIDIC contracts. The basic principles as well as their technicalities must be inferred from the applicable law. The applicable law may also invalidate some standard clauses which do not comply with the mandatory provisions of the applicable law.
  • Special Rules for Supply Contracts: Contractors and subcontractors procure building materials, plant and special machines from producers from across the world – we support our clients in drafting supply contracts, which often fall under the remit of the Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG).
  • Special Rules for Professional Services Agreements: Architects and specialised engineers undertake feasibility studies, develop the design from concept to execution stage, and supervise the works – we at BODENHEIMER support clients in determining the scope of the design works, the designers’ responsibilities and liabilities, having in mind the applicable law and the insurances in place.

BODENHEIMER have vast experience in international construction law. Dr. Rouven F. Bodenheimer has been recognised as a leading practitioner in the category “Construction” by WHO’S WHO LEGAL.

BODENHEIMER Representative Matters as Parties’ Counsel

Represented a German flooring contractor in a dispute against a hospital in Luxembourg, arising out of alleged defects and the unjustified call of a performance bond

Negotiated a contract for a German manufacturer of aluminium foam products for the supply of material for a construction project developed by a Chinese joint venture

Represented a German supplier of metal facades in a dispute arising out of a CISG contract, in connection with a public infrastructure project in central Asia, against the Turkish buyer before the German state courts, including in interim relief

Advised a manufacturer of coffee process plants in a dispute with an English subcontractor about delays in the installation of a coffee roaster plant

Drafted a subconsultancy agreement for a German engineering business to be used in an infrastructure project in Saudi Arabia

Advised an engineering business on the general terms for a consultancy agreement with a major French infrastructure business for a power plant in Poland