Mair Coombes Davies
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Mair Coombes Davies
"Her reassuring and gentle manner made a difference." - Client Feedback
Mair Coombes Davies is a practising barrister and qualified architect who has conducted thousands of separate arbitrations, adjudications and mediations during her career. Her experience includes the resolution of civil and commercial disputes involving local and national government, companies' partnerships and private individuals in many different sectors and activities.
Mair has had a long association with CEDR as the panel convener of CISAS, one of the country’s biggest consumer redress services operated by CEDR’s Group company IDRS. She is also a member of the CEDR Construction Adjudication panel. Mair has been a practising mediator for many years and was invited to join the CEDR Panel following CEDR accreditation in 2013.
A dual qualified architect and barrister Mair holds a PhD in construction law and practices as a barrister specialising in the built environment from Civitas Law in Cardiff. Her experience includes the resolution of disputes involving all aspects of the built environment from construction, planning and land disputes to commercial and consumer disputes.
Mair is an appointed arbitrator of the Welsh Assembly Government and the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and is a visiting Fellow in arbitration, adjudication and mediation of the University of South Wales.
- Dispute between international parties concerning commercial property and franchise.
- Warranties and bonds.
- Licence disputes.
- Companies and Partnerships, Commercial and Consumer contracts.
- Powers and liabilities of companies.
Construction & Engineering
- Dispute between a supplier and a developer regarding the contract sum in a high specification development revolving around whether or not the supplier's standard terms and conditions had been incorporated into the contract. Also the impact of large storage costs and interest caused by a significant delay of the works.
- Dispute as to a repudiator breach of contract to remove spoil from a construction site, what were the terms agreed and the valuation of the work.
- £1 million plus mansion extension and swimming pool under two separate contracts: a JCT contract with contractor's design and an ad hoc contract. Allegations of overpayment by the employer and underpayment by the contractor triggered the dispute. Issues included workmanship, contract administration and repudiation.
- Dispute between a specialist acoustic sub-contractor and the sole UK supplier and contractor of acoustic materials for use in construction regarding payments for work and materials over a number of years for more than 30 agreements.
- Building, Construction & Engineering Contracts.
- Formation of contracts, mistake and misrepresentation.
- Interpretation of construction and engineering contracts and subcontracts.
- Obligations and liabilities of employers, main contractors and subcontractors.
- Third party rights, assignments of contractual rights.
- Impossibility of performance, contributory negligence, economic duress, estoppel and exclusion clauses.
- Vesting of property in materials and lien.
- Variations, valuations and liquidated damages.
- Payment, non-payment, quantum merit and recovery of payments.
- Interim certificates, final certificates, set-offs and approvals.
- Delays to the programme.
- Determination and discharge of contracts.
- Latent damage.
- Dispute between a subcontractor and a main contractor regarding whether or not certain drawings had been incorporated into a contract for the development of a college and the works were included in the contract sum or were variations to the contract.
- Planning applications, permissions, appeals and judicial review.
- Compulsory purchases, acquisition of land, adverse effects on property and compensation.
- Development of land, changes of use and permitted developments.
- Environmental impact assessments and protection of wildlife.
- Listed buildings consent and enforcement.
- Developments and development control within conservation areas, SSSIs, areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, National Parks and Urban Development Areas.
- Enforcement of planning control and enforcement notice appeals.
- Highways improvements.
- Publicity (including lack of) for planning applications.
- Lands Tribunal relief.
- Dispute Resolution: Arbitration, Adjudication and Mediation.
- Jurisdiction and powers of the tribunal.
- Loss of right to object.
- Default of parties.
- Joinder of parties.
Employment & Workplace: Complex and emotional cases in both private and public sector covering some very sensitive issues including discrimination, inappropriate behaviour by managers, bullying, tense relationships, disagreements over performance, loss of income and breaches of contract.
Energy & Natural Resources
Mair Coombes Davies is the Panel Convener for Renewable Energy Panel. Her experience includes disputes concerning wind energy, solar power and ground source heat systems between employers, contractors, professionals and others. They range from the failure to properly advise, the calculation of projected energy and income, location and installation of systems, the time and quality of the works, damage to property, payment, interpretation of the contract terms, professional negligence and breach of contract together with the level of customer service. For example:
- Case concerning the installation of a photo voltaic system which was not what was contractually agreed. The failure to register the system to enable the highest tariff rate to be achieved. The contractor’s conduct in administering the contract, not agreeing a final figure to be paid or providing paperwork, guarantees and service package.
- Case concerning the future loss of income over the life of a wind turbine system. Contractor’s limited estimate of forecast income not binding on third parties. The recommended location of the system and the projected energy calculation did not fully take into account the effect of site conditions (particularly a forest) which adversely effected power generation.
- Case concerning damage to employer’s and neighbouring properties through subsidence as a result of the installation of a ground heat recovery system. This in turn stemmed from a flawed ground survey, numerous variations to the route of trenches and a lack of trench support.
- Case concerning the installation of a ground source heat pump producing lower energy than manufacturer’s data, and establishing a solution to allow it to work more efficiently with minimum disruption and cost.
- Case concerning a contractor’s failure to respond to correspondence to provide signed and dated copies of contract documents, obtain a pre-installation survey and install a photo voltaic system within the contract time. Contractor alleging nonpayment by the employer.
ICT – Information, Communication & Technology
Mair has considerable experience of IT disputes covering broadband, mobiles, on demand services, pay TV and premium rate services. She has had experience of many hundreds of IT cases including disputes of:
- Copyright in connection with the design and development of computer programmes and web advertising
- Termination of IT consultancy agreements
- Valuation of online financial software systems
- Television broadcast freedom of speech issues
- Provision of and payment for internet and communication services.
Mair is the panel convener of CISAS, the Communication and Internet Services Adjudication Scheme, an Ofcom approved dispute resolution scheme and also the editor of CISAS Case Studies, Index and Compensation Summary, one of the leading sources for information on communication and internet dispute resolution cases.
Partnership & Shareholder
- Dispute between directors over valuation and buy out of a niche company.
- Partners' rights between themselves and liability to third persons.
- Partnership property, division of assets and profits.
- Partners' lien.
- Dissolution of partnerships.
- Ownership and disposition of company property.
- Disputes regarding defamation actions causing grave damage to personal and professional reputations defended on the basis of qualified or absolute privilege.
- Professional negligence and standard of skill and care of architects, engineers and quantity surveyors.
- Liability for design, inspection and supervision.
- Quality and fitness of materials and workmanship.
- Negligence, nuisance, breaches of statutory duty, vicarious liability, occupier's liability and liabilities to third persons.
- Purchase, sale and rent of land/property.
- Construing title deeds, statutory declarations, maps and photographs.
- Rectification and estoppel.
- Boundary disputes.
- Land registry adjudications.
- Creation and extinguishment of easements and licences.
- Easement disputes including rights of way, ways of necessity, rights of lights, rights of support, and water rights.
- Trespass to land and airspace.
- Adverse possession and recovery of land.
- Nuisance and abatement.
- Party walls, party structures, and access to neighbouring land.
- Professional negligence of valuers, estate agents and surveyors.
- Landlord and Tenant
- Leases, underleases, and licences.
- Reversions and assignments of leases.
- Content, interpretation, variations and implied terms of leases.
- Fixtures and fittings.
- Terms of tenancies, terminating leases, notices to quit, recovering possession and security of tenure.
- Payment, non-payment, deductions and recovery of rent.
- Rent reviews.
- Repair, rebuilding, waste, fitness, alterations and improvements of premises.
- Tenants' obligations to landlords, and vice-versa.
- Benefit and burden of covenants for quiet enjoyment.
Mair demonstrates a calm and caring approach to her mediation work coupled with a determination to help the parties reach settlement. She has been praised for her ability to establish a comfortable and safe environment in which the parties can express themselves fully.
Feedback – Clients & Assessors
- “Patience and attention to detail.”
- “Her reassuring and gentle manner made a difference.”
- “Exemplary handling of the proceedings.”
- “The Service provided by Mair was second to none.”
- “Lent a listening ear and was always very caring.”
- “Genuine caring manner and determination to see things through to the end.”
- “Excellent at bringing the discussion back on to track each time it tended to divert needlessly away.”
- “Offered full confidence in both your impartiality and honouring of the confidentiality requirement to both parties implicitly.”
- “The service provided by Mair was second to none.”
In addition to being a practicing Arbitrator, Barrister, Adjudicator and Mediator Mair has lead and sat on specialist committees on the development and future of Dispute Resolution for the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, the General Council of the Bar and the Royal Institute of British Architects. She has lectured widely and is the author of several publications on Dispute Resolution including the RIBA Good Practice Guide: Arbitration and the RIBA Good Practice Guide: Adjudication. She represents the UK on dispute resolution at the Architects Council of Europe, Brussels.
- Dual qualified barrister architect. Sits as adjudicator, arbitrator, mediator. B.Sc.(First), B.Arch.(Distinction), Ph.D. (law). RIBA, F.C.I.Arb.
- Nominated Fellow of the University of Glamorgan with reference to arbitration, adjudication and mediation.
- Member CIArb UK Panel of Examiners for chartered arbitrator status.
- Office of the Deputy Prime Minister appointed arbitrator.
- Welsh Assembly Government appointed arbitrator.
- Head of the Dispute Resolution Division, Civitas Law Public and Civil Law Barristers.
- Chairman Royal Institute of British Architects Presidents Advisory Committee on Dispute Resolution for arbitrators, adjudicators and mediators.
- General Council of the Bar of England and Wales Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee.
- Chairman, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators IDRS Panel of Convenors for arbitration, adjudication and mediation.
- Secretary, Association of Welsh Mediators.
- Committee member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Panels Management Group.
- Member, Dispute Board Federation.
- Member, RIBA President’s Lists of Arbitrators, Adjudicators and Mediators.
- Member, several CEDR Panels and Head of the Panel of Adjudicators.
- Member, Construction Industry Council Panel of Adjudicators.
- Member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators Panels of Arbitrators and Adjudicators.
- Member, London Court of International Arbitration.
- Mayor, local government.
- Chairman, local government planning committee.
- Mair is an Associate Member of the Cardiff & District Law Society.
Updated: March 2016