'Construction, the Consumer and the Law: Time for Change?'

  • Location: The Great Hall, King's College London
  • Date: 08/06/2016
  • Time: 09:00 - 18:30


In relation to those who offer or provide construction services, most consumers are in a relatively weak position, in terms of both information and bargaining power. This is true of a would-be buyer making an off-plan contract with a developer for a new house or flat, as it is of a homeowner negotiating with a builder or architect about a home extension. By what legal or other forms of intervention (including insurance) can such consumers be given effective protection, and against what risks? What professional help is, or should be, available to them? And what forms of redress and dispute resolution are appropriate where
prevention breaks down?

The conference, organised by the Centre of Construction Law and supported by BLP Insurance, will explore answers to these questions.

Conference Aims

  • To raise awareness of this undervalued area of construction law
  • To define best practice, as well to identify current 'pinch-points' in the law or practice, including any 'access to justice' issues
  • To identify directions for reform to deal with these 'pinch-points'
  • To reposition construction law as it affects consumers as a distinct practice area deserving greater recognition
  • To facilitate contact, including across borders, between practitioners in the field

Main topics

  • Keynote address: Sir Peter Fraser (High Court/TCC)
  • Consumer protection and construction: the EU, UK and Australasia
  • Consumers and off-plan purchases of homes
  • Consumers and extensions, renovation and maintenance
  • ‘Build quality’: who sets the standard?
  • Managing the risk of defects
  • New construction techniques: opportunity or challenge for the consumer?
  • Consumer protection and construction: learning from other jurisdictions
  • Legal remedies for defects: do consumers have access to justice?
  • ‘Time for change?’ Summing up and looking ahead


Those who have indicated their intention to take part include:

Professor David Mosey (Director, Centre of Construction Law, King’s College London); Stéphanie van Gulijk (Tilburg University); Philip Britton (King’s College London); Matthew Bell (Melbourne Law School); Claudia Otto (Kerman & Co); Katrine Sporle (Property Ombudsman); Mark Fairweather (Fairweather Stephenson & Co Ltd); Sarah Lupton (Lupton Stellakis); Francesca Kaye (Russell-Cooke); Peter Aeberli (3 Paper
Buildings/King’s College London); Liz Male (TrustMark); Paula Higgins (HomeOwners Alliance); Philip Grisewood (Buildmark/NHBC)); Kim Vernau (BLP); Murray Armes (SenseStudio); Katerina Hoey (Probyn Miers); Frances Forward (ForwardConsult); Orla Fitz.Gerald (Fitz.Gerald Associates); Jan-Bertram Hillig (Börgers); Chris Easton (Easton Bevins); Paul Letman (3 Hare Court); Elizabeth Repper (Keating Chambers); and Catherine Aird (VCAT, Melbourne)

'Construction, the Consumer and the Law: Time for Change?'


The Great Hall
King's College
London (Strand Campus)

To reserve a place please visit the KCL website.

Your conference fee includes all documentation, refreshments, a snack lunch and post conference
drinks. The standard fee is £295, but there is a £30 Early Bird discount for bookings before 1 May 2016 and for SCL and Adjudication Society members, as well as special rates for current students, trainees and academics. Attendance qualifies for seven hours’ CPD for barristers and solicitors.

If you have specific enquiries, please e-mail the Conference Administrator, Elizabeth Alabaster, at elizabeth.alabaster@kcl.ac.uk. Or phone (+44)(0)20-7848 2685.

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