find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Maddocks builds Sri Lankan relationships

Maddocks builds Sri Lankan relationships

Maddocks has contributed to reconstruction efforts in post-tsunami Sri Lanka, assisting with a housing project near Galle in the island’s south-west, one of the areas worst hit by the disaster.…

Maddocks has contributed to reconstruction efforts in post-tsunami Sri Lanka, assisting with a housing project near Galle in the island’s south-west, one of the areas worst hit by the disaster. The firm provided pro bono legal services to the State Government of Victoria, through the Department of Premier & Cabinet, which was funding the project.

Maddocks advised on both the project structuring and the preparation of detailed project documents, which included a managing contractor agreement, independent certifier agreement and a partnership agreement with local charity the Foundation of Goodness. The charity will transfer the property titles for the houses to the villagers once they are completed.

Construction and major projects partner Josh Marchant said the project was not as large as some in terms of dollar value, but was huge in terms of motivational factors. While deals were often driven by clients cracking whips, he said there was a genuine motivation on this project to complete as quickly as possible. “You knew all these people were living in tents, and the quicker we could get the project moving, the quicker they could get into housing.”

He said the firm based its approach largely on that taken on projects funded by the World Bank. “There is a need to look at risk differently in post-tsunami projects because there is a massive shortage of labour and supplies — almost every tradesman in the Indian Ocean region is busy working on reconstruction projects.”

This meant the risk surrounding labour and materials was much higher than normal, so a more flexible approach than a lump sum delivery model had to be taken, because of the uncertainties in the local market.

Maddocks worked with Sri Lankan lawyers from the Colombo-based firm De Saram, who advised on the local legal issues, and Marchant said cultural differences added some unique aspects to the deal. While Australia is a document-based culture, the Sri Lankan stakeholders did not always operate in the same way. “So it was a matter of finding a good balance in getting documentation that people could work with.”

The project also required jurisdictional agreements as to whether the project would be governed by Australian or Sri Lankan law, he said.

The Victorian Government provided $3.2 million to fund the reconstruction of 84 houses and associated infrastructure, including a community centre and children’s playground, for villagers in Seenigama, near Galle. Construction started this month, and should be completed by the end of the year. The settlement will be known as Victoria Gardens.

“We have been able to facilitate delivery of an important project across national borders. Differences in law and cultural expectations, which could have otherwise derailed the project, have been accommodated to good effect,” Marchant said.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Maddocks builds Sri Lankan relationships
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Oct 20 2017
Podcast: One of law’s most infamous alumni – in conversation with Julian Morrow
In this episode of The Lawyers Weekly Show, Melissa Coade is joined by The Chaser’s Julian Morrow....
Oct 20 2017
High Court overturns ‘excessive’ anti-protest legislation
Bob Brown’s recent victory in the High Court over the Tasmanian government was a win for fundament...
Oct 20 2017
Changes to Australian citizenship laws blocked
Attempts to beef up the requirements to obtain Australian citizenship were thwarted this week, after...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...