Private Finance Initiative and Public Private Partnerships

Since the 1990s the Private Finance Initiative has delivered over £56 billion of private sector capital investment across more than 800 UK infrastructure projects. 

Fenwick Elliott has a specialist team of lawyers who understand the complex and interlocking dynamics of the multi-level and long-term agreements that make up the suite of contract documents for PFI and PPP projects.  Our team’s experience of advising project companies, FM contractors, D&B contractors, public sector bodies and lenders encompasses:

  • Involvement in projects covering the full spectrum of assets that have been delivered by PFI and PPP, including hospitals, schools, roads, colleges, police stations, light railways and utilities infrastructure. 
  • Advising in relation to typical PFI/PPP dispute issues including contract interpretation, pass through, fire stopping/compartmentation defects, lifecycle obligations, handback condition, termination risk, step in, service deductions, market testing, asset valuation, performance point awards and moratorium agreements.
  • Representing PFI/PPP clients in mediation, adjudication, expert procedures, arbitration and court proceedings. 

Advising in relation to fire-stopping issues

Acting for several hospital project companies in relation to fire-stopping and compartmentation defects and connected service failures. Advising on positional correspondence and representing the project companies in adjudications commenced by NHS Trusts including in alliance with FM contractors and in related disputes tripartite procedures.

Advising in relation to safety conditions and maintenance

Advising the FM contractor on disputes concerning the application of performance deductions and alleged breaches of safety conditions and maintenance obligations for a large NHS hospital complex. Our advice has encompassed shaping the strategy, advising the project team on a daily basis, assisting in settlement negotiations, drafting standstill agreements and, simultaneously, preparing for proceedings if required.

Advising in relation to corroded pipe issues

Acting for project companies in relation to the cause and extent of corrosion in LTHW heating systems pipework.  Representing project companies in related disputes adjudications with the FM contractor and with the D&B contractor and liaising with the lenders in connection with the settlement agreements governing the remedial works programmes.  

Fair market value dispute

Advising the concessionaire for water treatment infrastructure assets in relation to the fair market value of those assets, payable by the authority following the expiry of the concession period.  Acting for the concessionaire in an arbitration that eventually led to settlement of the valuation dispute on commercial terms.

Retention sum dispute

Advising the concessionaire for a UK motorways project in relation to the proper interpretation of the concession agreement mechanism entitling the authority to apply deductions to fund a retention account to cover future repair liabilities following handback.

Railway land dispute

Advising the concessionaire for a light railway link in relation to the ownership of surplus land plots adjacent to the tracks. Acting for the concessionaire in a panel procedure that determined which plots were to be sold for the concessionaire’s benefit in accordance with the terms of the concession agreement. Advising the concessionaire on handback issues and drafting full and final settlement terms following the expiry of the concession.