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Updated NEC contract guides launched

The ICE’s specialist NEC contracts panel has published a series of “How to” guides for NEC3 users and developed a new Professional Service Short Contract (PSSC).

It has also published updates to its existing suite of contracts.

The updated April 2013 suite was officially launched at the NEC Users’ Group Annual Seminar, held at the ICE late last month.

The seven “How To” guides were developed to improve the way practitioners set up and manage the contracts.

NEC’s suite of contracts require more proactive and collaborative management than traditional contract forms.

Mott MacDonald procurement and NEC specialist Richard Patterson, who authored How to write the Professional Services Contract (PSC) Scope together with colleagues and who also presented a session at the Annual Seminar, said of the new guides: “This was a natural follow-on for NEC. It helps the client to better fulfil the specific requirements of the NEC contracts.” The documents should benefit both project parties, Patterson said.

The new PSSC has been added to the NEC3 contract suite for use on smaller scale projects where less sophisticated levels of management are required.

It was developed with the Association for Project Management in response to requests from project managers and users of the existing PSC.

Each contract in the suite has been updated to incorporate changes relating to the 2011 amendments to the Construction Act. As a direct response to the government’s fair payment initiatives, the contracts have also been updated with provisions for the use of project bank accounts - into which a client makes payments and from which contractors and subcontractors receive their payments.

NEC general manager Rekha Thawrani called the updated NEC3 suite “our biggest and most comprehensive yet”.

The updates are of interest for a range of NEC3 users including contract and procurement managers, facilities managers, surveyors, lawyers and commercial directors, Thawrani said. NEC contracts are endorsed by the Cabinet Office for use on all public sector projects in the UK.

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