One week to go (as if we did not know) before general election day 2019 and the promises as to what each party (if successful) will deliver to us just keep on coming. Only 7 more days of promises, promises and, oh yes, more promises and then (unless you've voted by post) we can all pop down to our local polling station, place an X in the box and forget all about it until the following morning.

All this talk of the general election overlooks, of course, the far more important event that falls, this year, on Friday 13th of December. The event I am referring to is, of course, the annual yuletide 'Adjudication Ambush". Why, you ask, does this fall on the Friday 13th? The answer is as follows:

(1) You have, for some time now, been promising the other side that your financial difference (you don't like to use the word 'dispute') can be resolved quite easily. You have had lots of chats over the past weeks and months but the difference remains;

(2) Sadly, however, times are getting hard and the other side's goodwill present of a Corgi cast metal model of the New Routemaster 'Boris bus' with the words, "You owe me £350m per week", written on its side is the final straw;

(3) You call your friendly claims consultant, 'Smash & Grab' who advise going to adjudication and serving the Notice of Adjudication on Friday 13th. You agree;

(4) While you sit listening to the 2019 election result, Smash & Grab text you to say, "Good News. Notice served this morning. We will now apply for an adjudicator to be nominated";

(5) The following Tuesday (the 17th), Mr Very Senior Adjudicator (there are far too few women and junior adjudicators on any of the institutions panels) is appointed;

(6) Smash & Grab serve the Referral Notice (the detailed claim) on Mr Very Senior Adjudicator and the other party on the 20th of December, i.e. within the required 7 day period; and

(7) You shut the office door, head home and leave the other side to work over the Christmas and New Year period to draft its Response. At that point you recall that your opposite number mentioned he was due to be in Switzerland with his family over this festive period. Oh dear, perhaps he will have to cancel his family holiday, so you text him a message, 'Happy Festive Season. All the best. Enjoy spending time drafting your Response. See you next year".

Of course, the above is pure fiction and no one would serve a Notice of Adjudication on Friday 13th of December. And no one would really want to make the other side spend Christmas and New Year in the office. It just could not happen, could it?

Unfortunately, the adjudication 'ambush' is one creature of the construction claims industry that is not extinct. Therefore, if you do work in the construction sector and you currently have a 'difference' of opinion over, for example, a payment and/or an extension of time claim, be prepared for a busy couple of weeks.

If you need any help, it is only a phone call away.