What is an excusable construction delay?

Not everything in life is predictable. Even under the best conditions, a Tennessee contractor may struggle to stay on the schedule that they agreed to in their contract for services. Whether those events that keep them from moving forward are their doing or the fault of someone else, they may hold some liability for delays that impact the completion of their projects.

Some events that result in construction delays are considered excusable, and this post will discuss those in some detail. The information contained herein is not legal advice. Any construction entity that is facing challenges based on construction delays should talk to its trusted construction litigation attorney.

Underlying construction contracts as a basis for information

There are generalities that can be mentioned regarding what is and is not an excusable construction delay. However, for an entity to know exactly what they must do with regard to possible events that can result in delays, they should look to their construction contracts. Individual contracts will include terms and stipulations about what is considered an excusable delay. It is therefore imperative that businesses understand, review, and execute their contracts with confidence.

Common excusable construction delays

There are several common kinds of delays that are considered excusable in the construction world. These delays are events that fall outside the responsibilities of the parties or the actions of the contractor. They can include, but are not limited to:

  • Force majeure
  • Acts of God, such as weather events
  • Labor disputes
  • Changes ordered by the owner of the construction project

A contractor can only do as well as the conditions they are given to work with. When delays come up, it is important that they understand just what they will have to do to fully meet their obligations under their construction contract. Their construction litigation attorney can advise about and represent them during disputes over construction delays.


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