Many occupiers still fail to sufficiently protect their interests by ensuring that the appropriate paperwork is in place when construction works are carried out in or adjacent to their premises. Whilst many defects continue to be identified and remedied when a contractor is on site, significant problems can and do arise with latent or hidden defects. Issues such as water ingress, damp or fire stopping works, among others, may not become apparent in some cases until many years after the original works were carried out.
When defects do arise from construction works, tenants should not assume that they will always be able to recover from their landlord under the terms of the lease. This point can be illustrated by the well-known case of an upmarket lingerie company in a dispute with its landlord over damp-proofing works to basement premises.