“By Others” and “N.I.C.”

The terms “By Others” and “Not In Contract” (or “N.I.C.”) can add confusion to construction documents if the intent of the terms is not well established within the documents. The note “By Others” on a drawing may be intended to indicate that an item is to be provided by a different trade under the same overall construction contract, and “N.I.C.” may be intended similarly to indicate an item that is to be provided by a different trade. However, these notes may have different meanings for different readers. Without further clarification, a general contractor seeing a note “By Others” or “N.I.C.” may take it at face value to mean the item is not part of the general contractor’s scope at all, even if the intent of the note was to indicate its exclusion only from the work of a particular trade or subtrade or a particular bid package. It is better to develop and use terms that convey the intent more precisely. For example, if an item shown on a site plan is intended to be provided by an electrical contractor whose work scope is also established on other drawings, it may be appropriate for the site plan to include the term “By Electrical Contractor” in a note relating to the item. Alternatively, it may be practical for all items that are not intended to be part of the site work to be noted “Not by Site Work Contractor”, provided the term does not contradict a general contractor’s contractual authority to assign such work. Drawings which are specifically intended to describe the work of a particular trade or subtrade can benefit from a List of Abbreviations or a List of Terms which clarify the meaning of such notes in order to minimize confusion.

Posted in Construction Administration, Design, Project Management

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