Contract Change # 10:   Differing Site Conditions (law note)

mud slide site conditionsAs promised in my note yesterday, today begins the first in a 10 part series on the most significant changes to the AIA A201, General Conditions to the Contract.

I’ll take the changes in reverse order, a la David Letterman…..

Change #10:  Differing Site Conditions

Previously, the A201 required a Contractor to provide notice to the Owner and Architect within 21 days after discovery of unforeseen site conditions.  This notification is required prior to the conditions being disturbed, so as to allow the Design Team the ability to evaluate the site and determine the compensability of any such differing conditions.

The requirement has been shortened to 14 days — that is, under the 2017 version, a Contractor must give the notification within 14 days of discovery.   See Section 3.7.4.

This is a small contract adjustment, but could prove substantially deprive a contractor of potential additional sums if caught unawares.  As the Architect or Engineer of Record, you should also be aware of this new 14 day requirement, which is a week shorter than most AIA deadlines.

Stay tuned for Change # 9, dealing with the Owner’s Right to Carry Out the Work, in the next post.


Photo courtesy NPS.


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