Fault may lie with the builder, the client's professional advisers, or the client themselves. Indeed all of these parties may have contributed to the problem.
The first thing to establish is what has gone wrong and what remedies may be available to you. We can help you find the best way forward.
If we are to serve you best it is essential that you are frank and honest with us and disclose everything. Remember we are bound by the code of conduct of Portuguese Order of Architect, or Engineers, so confidentiality is ensured. Your aim should not be to convince us that you have been wronged, convincing us will not get you closer to solving the problem. Ultimately it may be a judge that you have to convince, but at this early stage we should be looking at all of the facts and the merits of both your case and that of the other parties. If you do not disclose everything the advice we give may not be in your best interests.
Resolving the problem
There are many ways of resolving building disputes that do not involve going to court and these alternatives are worth considering. Arbitration, Adjudication and Mediation all offer advantages in terms of limiting costs and ensuring speedy resolution. We can offer advice on these options and whether they are open to you.
Ultimately you may need, or choose, to litigate. If so we would normally advise you appoint a solicitor to manage your case. As chartered surveys we can approach counsel directly, but solicitors are expert at case management. In this scenario we would act as expert witness only.
The first thing a client should understand about the duty of an expert is that he can be appointed by one party to the dispute, or jointly by both parties. Whichever it is the expert owes his prime duty not to those that have appointed him, but to the court. He must provide his honest opinion on those matters in which he has expertise, even if his opinion does not support his client's case. Moreover, Chartered Surveyors acting as experts are bound by the RICS Guidance for Surveyors Acting as Expert Witness which also insists that they act honestly and impartially.
If you have a building dispute it is best to talk to us to decide on the best way forward.
At Tecnonexe we make sure that we have always working together architects and engineers, this because we believe in team work, and getting together different perspectives.
In Portugal doesn't exist an entity like RICS (The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) in Uk. Construction reports, and responsibilities in Portugal are assumed by architects or engineers, and these technicians must be chartered by architect's council or engineering council(Ordem dos ArquitectosouOrdem dos Engenheiros).