NEC ECC: Contractor misses Key Date and PM fails to assess on time

The PM has failed to assess the consequences (25.3) in time from a Key date meaning the Employer has lost the right to recover their direct costs. The Contractor’s EWN is also more than 8 weeks old and therefore timed out. If the Employer has no other means of recovery nor completing the works in time, could the employer terminate the works and contract with an alternative supplier to commence the works?

I do not believe that the Employer has lost the right to recover direct costs if they fail to assess the costs incurred within the four weeks stated in 25.3. It does beg the question why have a timescale, but there is no where that it says if they don’t assess within the period they have lost the chance to.

Equally early warnings are “not timed out”. They should notify such a matter as soon as they become aware, and the lack of a prompt early warning could be taken into account if the matter leads to a compensation event.