Change Order Form

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A change order is a document that records variations in the original contract, be it the scope of work, resources, time, or budget. The change order form provides a formal means for recognizing and authorizing changes, thus guarding the involved parties' rights and interests. Fill out this change order template on Lawrina and submit the prepared PDF sample to your construction contract in minutes.
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This document safeguards the rights of the parties involved in a construction project.
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Paper titled "Change Order", a construction plan lying nearby; man with a saw talking to a woman holding a painting roller and standing near the house

A change order is a crucial document that records variations in the original contract, be it the scope of work, resources, time, or budget. The change order form provides a formal means for recognizing and authorizing changes, thus guarding the involved parties' rights and interests.

This document is particularly relevant to the construction industry. For instance, a construction change order form safeguards contractors and owners by legitimizing alterations in the original project's scope or cost. By using a construction change order template, one can efficiently manage changes, prevent miscommunication, and avoid costly disputes.

When To Use a Change Order Form

A change order contract is required when alterations to the original project's scope become necessary due to unforeseen circumstances. However, it isn't a tool for eventuality; instead, it's a structured approach to manage potential changes in project parameters — cost, time, or quality — that might affect the total output.

For instance, in a construction project, using a change order form construction becomes mandatory when there are changes in the client's requirements, issues with the supply of necessary materials, adjustments in project timelines, or unexpected site conditions. In such cases, a construction change order form PDF should be on hand to facilitate immediate discussion and agreement.

Other industry sectors, such as engineering, manufacturing, or software development, also employ change order forms to handle similar scenarios. A contractor change order form, for instance, allows scope modifications without breaching the original contract's sanctity.

Parties of the Change Order

  • Contractor — This is the organization or individual who executes the project per the agreement's original terms. The contractor must complete the project within the agreed parameters — time, cost, and quality. When initiating a change order, the contractor is accountable for effectuating the agreed-upon alterations. Upon successful completion of the changes, they may issue an amended project completion document. 

  • Client — This would be the individual, commercial entity, or government organization that initially commissioned the project. In the context of a change order request form construction, the client is responsible for agreeing to the revised terms and providing additional resources, if necessary. Once the changes have been successfully implemented and the project completed, the client receives the finalized project. The client then provides the contractor with revised compensation, often confirmed by a change order document, validating that the modified project terms have been satisfied. These documents are typically recorded with the respective project stakeholders to maintain transparency and avoid future discrepancies. 

  • Subcontractor — This is the party to whom a portion of the contractor's work is outsourced. A subcontractor is integral in larger projects where the main contractor may not be able to perform all tasks and requires specialized expertise. The subcontractor is directly accountable to the contractor and indirectly to the client. 
Insight

In the case of change orders, if the subcontracted work is impacted, relevant changes should be communicated and agreed upon with the subcontractor. Upon completion of the revised scope, the subcontractor gets revised compensation from the contractor. In this case, the construction change order sample ensures transparency and the fair transaction of services and payment.

Key Terms

  • Change Directive: An order given before the negotiation that directs the contractor to start the changes.
  • Allowance: The budget set aside for unexpected changes.
  • Contingency Sum: The funds the owner reserves to cover potential unforeseen changes.
  • Contract Sum: Total agreed cost of the construction contract, susceptible to changes.
  • Variation Order: Similar to a change order, but typically pertains to smaller-scale modifications.

How to Write a Change Order Form

The original contract change order is vital in project management, as it provides a structured system for adjustments to the originally agreed-upon project specifications. Whether you are a contractor, client, or subcontractor, online resources like Lawrina offer well-crafted, downloadable construction change order form templates to help you write a change order.

Let's break down the steps involved in writing a change order for each party:

Contractor
  1. Include comprehensive details of all relevant parties, such as their legal names and contact information.
  2. Clearly define the exact change in project scope, including the specifics of the revised work, materials, or resources.
  3. Outline the adjusted timelines, if any, along with the reasons necessitating such a change.
  4. Incorporate revised cost schedules detailing any incremental costs associated with each proposed change.
Client
  1. Mention the name of the project undergoing alterations, along with any relevant project identification numbers.
  2. Specify the rationale behind the change and tie it back to the project objectives.
  3. Affirm that the changes requested are essential to the project's successful completion.
  4. Describe any effects on project timelines and costs as a result of the modifications.
  5. Define the process through which the change order will be reviewed and accepted and who will have the final sign-off authority.

Subcontractor

  1. Provide details about the particular change, highlighting its impact on the subcontractor's scope of work.
  2. State the shift in timelines, if any, and illustrate how it affects the subcontractor's deliverables.
  3. Discuss the revised payment schedules, considering any additional costs brought by the modifications.
  4. Determine how the change order requisition will be handled, who will review it, and the process for final agreement. 

All parties are advised to carefully review the change order form examples to safeguard their interests. Remember, achieving an initial agreement on the vital elements of the construction change order forms, including the change details, revised payment schedule, and authority for final approval, is crucial to ensure a seamless process when creating these documents.

Change orders, including the subcontractor change order form, are absolutely essential for managing project changes effectively. With the help of templates, such as a change order construction PDF, crafting these essential documents becomes a streamlined process. These templates are customizable to fit your specific needs, saving you valuable time and effort. Using a contractor change order template will give you a solid platform for tackling any disruptions head-on while ensuring all parties' rights and interests are properly safeguarded.

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