Last edited 26 Feb 2018


As buildings become increasingly complicated, so it becomes less and less likely that any one contractor will have the required skills to carry out all of the works necessary to construct them, and it may not make good commercial sense to take on new employees for one project that would then have to be laid off for the next.

Increasingly therefore, contractors will use sub-contractors to carry out particular elements of the works. Sub-contractors (or subcontractors) are sometimes referred to as 'subbies', or increasingly, simply as 'suppliers'.

A sub-subcontract is a contract that is created by a subcontractor with an organisation or individual to perform a portion of the works for which the subcontractor was contracted. If a subcontractor intends to sub-subcontract part of their works, they ensure that the terms of the subcontract allow this.

One such sub-subcontract is the Joint Contracts Tribunal (JCT)’s Sub-subcontract (or SubSub), which is designed for use on sub-subcontract works where the main contract is a JCT contract. It can be used on a standard sub-contract, and also where the works (sub-subcontract or sub-contract) are intended to be carried out in sections. The works can be based on remeasurement or on an adjusted sub-subcontract sum, i.e. adjusted for variations. It is not suitable where the works are of a complex technical nature, or if they require back-to-back provisions with the sub-contract.

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