Acceptance of construction work – the institution of staging
In the course of acceptance, the inspector is obliged to verify whether construction work was conducted in accordance with the design, building permit and law. “The current law does not regulate the issue of acceptance, but concentrates on formal requirements […] It should not be forgotten, however, that the rules for acceptance of particular stages of construction work can be regulated in a contract,” write legal advisor Artur Sidor and Zuzanna Morawska in an article for the “Builder” magazine.
Construction contracts signed on account of big and complex investment usually make reservations as to which stages of construction work should be subject to separate acceptance. “The investors thus secure their greater control over the construction process […] Further works should not be initiated until an acceptance record is signed or until the period when the investor should sign it ends,” the authors note.
In practice, disputes related to acceptance of construction work arise when acceptance is denied or in the case of actual absences when acceptance is performed. Oftentimes, in the contract, investors provide long and imprecise deadlines for acceptance. “It seems that participants of the construction process do not make sufficient use of the opportunity to regulate the issue of acceptance in the contract,” the authors write in the article.
The previous Sejm was working on the draft Building code which would address the problem of ongoing monitoring of the state of construction work. The draft envisaged severe consequences for violation of provisions concerning acceptance of construction stages and determined a detailed procedure of their acceptance. “The draft clearly stated that, first and foremost, it is the investor who is liable for the object’s non-compliance with regulations,” the authors note.
In the light of the draft, the acceptance itself would consist in verifying the construction work’s compliance with the design, conditions provided in the building permit, regulations and principles of technical knowledge.
According to the authors, the planned changes could have “resulted in a decreased number of building disputes arising from performance (or non-performance) of acceptance.”