Spirit Architecture

Terms & Conditions of Appointment

Architect’s Services

1.1 The Architect exercises reasonable skill care and diligence in accordance with the normal standards of the Architect’s profession in performing the Services and discharging all the obligations under this Condition 1.

1.2 The Architect:
1.2.1 performs the Services without undue delay and, so far as reasonably practicable, in accordance with any time-scale or cost limits agreed with the client;
1.2.2 advises on progress in the performance of the Services and of any issue that may affect the delivery, the cost or quality of the project;
1.2.3 acts as the Client’s representative and acts fairly when dealing between the Client and any other party;
1.2.4 advises on compliance with statutory requirements;
1.2.5 co-operates with any other persons appointed, coordinates and integrates their work and passes relevant information to them;
1.2.6 makes no material alteration to the Services or the approved design without the consent of the Client, except in an emergency;
1.2.7 does not sub-contract performance of any part of the Services without the consent of the Client, which consent is not unreasonably withheld.
2 The Architect complies with the requirements of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.

Client’s responsibilities

3 The Client:
3.1 advises the Architect of the requirements and of any subsequent changes required;
3.2 provides all the information in the client’s possession, or which is reasonably obtainable, and which is necessary for the proper and timely performance of the Services and the Architect is entitled to rely on such information;
3.3 gives decisions and approvals necessary for the performance of the Services
3.4 acknowledges that planning permission and other approvals from third parties may not be granted at all, or if granted, in accordance with any anticipated time-scale;
3.5 may issue instructions to the Architect, subject to the Architect’s right of reasonable objection;
3.6 does not deal with the contractor or contractors directly or interfere with the Architect’s duties or actions under the building contract;
3.7 appoints and pays any other consultants or contractors required under separate agreements;
3.8 holds the contractor or contractors responsible for the proper carrying out and completion of construction works and for health and safety provisions on site.
3.9 will not use threatening behaviour, verbal or physical abuse to the Architect or the Architect’s representatives, failure to comply will result in immediate termination of the contract.

Assigning the Agreement

4.1 Neither the Architect nor the Client at any time assigns the Agreement or any rights arising under it without the prior written consent of the other, such consent not to be reasonably withheld or delayed.
Prior to assignment or assignation (where the law of Scotland applies) by the Client of the license to copy and use information, the Client pays all fees and/or other amounts due under Condition 5.4 and the Architect, following a request from Client, promptly confirms the degree of completion of the relevant material.
4.2 Except where Condition 7.2 applies, nothing in this Agreement confers or is intended to confer any right to enforce any of its terms on any person who is not a party to it, other than lawful assignees.

Fees and Expenses

5.1 The Architect’s fees and expenses are calculated and charged as set out in the Letter of Appointment
5.2 Where a percentage fee basis applies, the percentage or percentages stated in the Letter of Appointment is applied to the final cost of the building work, excluding VAT, fees and any claims made by or against the contractor or contractors. The percentages are applied to the current cost estimate, or the lowest compliant tender, or whichever is the higher contract sum until the final cost has been ascertained.
5.3 Lump sums, rates for time charges, mileage and printing are revised every 12 months in accordance with changes in the Consumer Price index. Each 12 month period commences on the anniversary of the date on which the architect commenced performance of the Services.
5.4 The Client pays the Architect’s accounts, including any additional fees, expenses, disbursements or VAT, within 14 days from the date of issue. Any sums remaining unpaid after 14 days bear interest at 8% over the official dealing rate of the Bank of England current at the date that a payment becomes overdue. The Architect reserves the right to pass all overdue accounts to a third party collection agency their charges currently stand at 20% of invoice value
5.5 Additional fees, calculated on a time basis unless otherwise agreed, are payable if the Architect is involved in extra work or incurs extra expense for reasons beyond the Architect’s control.
5.6 The Client informs the Architect in writing, on or before the date when payment is due, if the Client intends to withhold payment of any part of the amount due stating the amount to be withheld and the reason or reasons for doing so . If no notice is given the amount due is the amount stated as due in the account
5.7 The Architect is entitled to payment of any part of the fee for services satisfactorily performed together with any other amounts due at the date of any notice suspending or ending performance of any or all of the Services.
5.8 The Architect keeps and makes available on request records of any expenses and disbursements to be reimbursed at net cost and/or of time spent on Services charged on a time basis.

[1] Guidance published by the Office of Fair Trading says [consumers] are entitled to withhold part of the price, so long as the claim is genuine and the amount withheld is proportionate to the fault. The Letter of Appointment includes procedures for deciding on such claims.

Recovery of Costs

5.9 The Client or Architect making a claim against the other pays to the defendant all costs reasonably incurred by the defendant (including costs of time spent by its principals, employees and advisors of the defendant) in relation to the claim or any part of it which the defendant successfully defends or the claimant abandons

Copyright and licence

6 The Architect owns the copyright in the drawings and documents produced in performing the Services and generally asserts the Architect’s moral rights to be identified as the author of such work. The Client has a license to copy and use them only for the purposes related to the Project providing that all fees and/or other amounts due are paid in accordance with Condition 5.6. The Architect is not liable for any use of the drawings and documents other than the purpose for which they were prepared.

Architect’s continuing liability

7.1 The Architect is liable for any consequences of failing to keep to this Agreement for six years after practical completion of the construction of the project or the date of the last Services performed under this Agreement, whichever is the earlier.
7.2 The Client does not hold directors, employees, sub-consultants or agents of the Architect liable in respect of any negligence, default or other liability arising from performance of the Services.
Suspending or ending the Agreement
8 The Client or the Architect may suspend or end performance of the Services by giving at least 7 days’ written notice and stating the reason for doing so.
If the reason for a notice of suspension arises from a default and the recipient does not remedy the matter, the agreement will end on expiry of the notice period.
Where Services are suspended by the Client and not resumed within 3 months the Architect has the right to treat performance of the Services affected as ended on giving at least 7 days’ further written notice to the Client

Dispute resolution

9 Resolution of any dispute or difference arising out of the Appointment is dealt with as set out in the Letter of Appointment.

The above Terms and Conditions are taken from the RIBA Standard Conditions of Appointment for an Architect


Matthew Hollingsworth
Director of Spirit Architecture

[1] An architect is expected to operate in house procedures to promptly handle complaints and disputes relating to specific project or performance matters. An architect is also subject to the disciplinary sanction of the Architects Registration Board in relation to complaints of unacceptable professional conduct or serious professional incompetence.

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