Prevention Principle Podcast

Date: 28 July 2020

Thomas Lazur joined James Doe and Lucinda Hill to talk about the prevention principle for one of Herbert Smith Freehill’s podcasts. The 4 part discussion can be found here and is broken down into four parts:

  • Part 1: The development of the principle and the concept of “time at large” Was the judgment of Mr Justice Jackson a summation of existing law, or did it actually create new law? Did this judgment actually define the prevention principle orthodoxy?
  • Part 2: Are there signs of judicial questioning? Multiplex v Honeywell (1997) remains the orthodox view, but there have been flashes of dissent. Are these signs of a more serious judicial questioning of the prevention principle, or just isolated comments?
  • Part 3: Does the passing of the high water mark of prevention principle open the door to a more comprehensive challenge to its scope? There have been attempts by some to characterise the prevention principle as some irreproachable principle of law. This has now been dismissed but does this open the door to a more comprehensive challenge to its scope?
  • Part 4: Offshore construction contracts: a different context and a fear of time at large The prevention principle and concept of time at large have developed in the context of traditional construction contracts and the principle has been confirmed as applying (in least in theory) in the context of shipbuilding contracts. Is there a resistance to the emergent orthodoxy in the shipbuilding industry? Is there any good reasons why offshore construction or ship building contracts should be treated differently?

Thomas Lazur is an “enthusiastic” and “technically astute” senior junior who is “a pleasure to deal with even in the most highly pressurised circumstances”. Thomas has worked on disputes arising out of a wide range of significant construction projects both in the UK and internationally, most recently handling disputes in the Far East and Middle East. His traditional construction projects have ranged from domestic building disputes up to the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai.  Much of his practice is devoted to energy related projects including the decommissioning of the Magnox nuclear power stations in the UK, oil and gas power stations, and alternative energy production facilities including solar, energy-from-waste, and biomass power plants.


Thomas has also recently produced an article on the topic of the Prevention Principle alongside Adam Constable

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