ID Connections

PWGSG no longer accepting reports containing Statements of Limitations

Published by Candis Green, August 29, 2013.

The Pacific Region of Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC), acting on the advice of the Department of Justice (DOJ), has informed its engineering consultants that it will no longer accept reports containing Statements of Limitations. The Pacific Region of PWGSC issued the following statement regarding Statements of Limitations used by engineering consultants:

“With respect to including a Statement of Limitations in consulting reports, PWGSC has recently received a legal opinion from the Department of Justice that inclusion of a Statement of Limitations or similar wording that would unilaterally insert liability terms into the Contract is a breach of contract, specifically article 24 Liability of General Conditions 2035, Higher Complexity - Services, which are incorporated into the Contract by reference. Both the Technical Authority (Environmental Services) and the Contracting Authority (Acquisitions) concur with this opinion. Thus effective today PWGSC will no longer be in a position to accept any reports that have incorporated in them any Statements of Limitations (or equivalent). The only relevant limitations clauses are those specifically written into the contract.”

The Association of Consulting Engineering Companies (ACEC) disagrees with the position of PWGSC and the Department of Justice and believes that they misunderstand the intent and use of such Statements of Limitations. ACEC British Columbia has met with representatives of PWGSC in the Pacific Region. So far, PWGSC is standing by its position. Concurrently, ACEC has raised its concerns with senior officials with PWGSC in Ottawa and will continue to seek a resolution to this issue that is fair and reasonable to its engineering consultants.

To read more about the decision and recommendations offered by ACEC to help consultants mitigate the implications of article 24 Liability of General Conditions 2035, please click here.

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