This is a new concept in the Construction Contracts Act 2013. It is similar to the legislation in the UK but it is not identical. It will be a quick dispute resolution process that has been sometimes described as “rough justice”. A dispute can be referred to adjudication at any time. The standard time limit for the adjudicator to make his decision is 28 days after receiving the Referral (detailed claim) The adjudicator’s decision is binding. It can be overturned in subsequent arbitration or court proceedings but, unless and until that happens, any payment due on foot of the adjudicator’s decision must be paid even if arbitration or court action is commenced.


Adjudication is likely to bring many changes to the way construction disputes are handled. Because adjudication can be invoked at any time and because the decision is fast and binding, even if only in the interim, it is proving popular as the first choice for resolving disputes. The legislation takes priority over the terms of the contract and adjudication can be invoked even if conciliation or arbitration is started.

John Costello is well equipped to act as Adjudicator or advise a party. He is an Accredited Adjudicator (Republic of Ireland), a member of the Minister's Panel of Adjudicators, a member of the SCSI panel and a member of the CIArb panel.

Society of Chartered Surveyors
Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution
Construction Industry Federation
Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
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