FAQs: B106™ – 2020, Standard Form of Agreement Between Owner and Architect for Pro Bono Services

Does B106–2020 include provisions for partial compensation or payment for additional services?

B106 does not include provisions for partial compensation. A table format is provided which the parties can use to designate the scope of the architect’s pro bono services and the maximum number of hours the architect will provide for each designated pro bono service. If the architect will receive financial compensation for a portion of its services or for additional services, the parties must execute an amendment to B106 or a separate agreement.   

 

Which general conditions document should be used with B106–2020?

If the architect is providing construction phase services, B106–2020 is intended to be used in conjunction with AIA Document A201®–2017, General Conditions of the Contract for Construction, which incorporates by reference.

 

How are “pro bono services” defined?

In AIA Document B106™–2020, Standard Form of Agreement Between Owner and Architect for Pro Bono Services, the architect’s pro bono services are defined as those for which the architect receives no financial compensation other than compensation for reimbursable expenses. If the architect will receive financial compensation for a portion of its services or for additional services, the parties must execute an amendment to B106 or a separate agreement. 

 

Why is there a separate owner/architect agreement for pro bono services, i.e. B106-2020? 

An architect takes on significant risk in performing professional services. Typically, an architect’s fees are a small fraction of the overall cost of construction and the potential liability that could result from providing those services. In typical projects, the fees the architect receives act to offset the risks the architect faces. In an agreement where the architect provides its services pro bono, the architect still faces significant risk of liability, but without the prospect of financial gain.  For this reason, the AIA recommends that architects who are engaged in the provision of pro bono services consider using an agreement that helps mitigate the risks in providing professional services. 

 

What are the differences between B106™-2020 and other owner/architect agreements (like B101®-2017) in which the architect receives compensation? 

There are numerous differences between B106-2020 and the AIA’s other owner/architect agreements. The AIA recommends that the parties carefully compare the provisions of B106-2020 with other standard form owner/architect agreements before executing B106-2020.  The following is a summary of significant differences between B106-2020 and B101-2017

  • In B106-2020, the architect and owner agree that the Initial Information provided by the owner shall not materially change and, in the event that it does, the parties shall renegotiate the agreement, or they may terminate the agreement (see Section 1.2).  B101-2017, on the other hand, allows the owner more flexibility to change initial information, subject to adjustments in the architect’s compensation.  
  • B106-2020 is styled as a “menu of services” agreement that the architect and owner may agree to as being provided on a pro bono basis. The architect could potentially provide a range of pre-design services, individual phases of design, specialty design services, or post-construction services under B106-2020. On the other hand, B101-2017 envisions that the architect will primarily provide the traditional 5 phases of design – schematic design, design development, construction documents, bidding and negotiation, and construction contract administration – as basic services and other services will be provided as additional services.
  • B106-2020 does not include a detailed scope of services for the architect’s traditional 5 phases of design, nor does it include the “cost of the work” section that is present in B101-2017. If the architect is going to provide those services pro-bono, they must be selected in Section 3.2.2 and fully described in Section 3.3.  
  • B106-2020 requires the owner to purchase and maintain commercial general liability insurance during the course of the project (see Section 5.16), whereas B101-2017 is silent on such a requirement.
  • B106-2020 contains a claims limitation period of 6 years after the date of substantial completion of the work (see Section 7.1.1), rather than 10 years in B101-2017 and most other AIA owner/architect agreements.  
  • B106-2020 includes a provision where the owner indemnifies and holds the architect harmless from and against losses arising from third party claims (see Section 7.1.4).  B101-2017 does not contain such a provision. 
  • B106-2020 includes a provision that allows the parties to negotiate a limitation of the architect’s liability (see Section 7.1.5).  B101-2017 does not contain such a provision. 
  • B106-2020 includes a requirement that the parties conduct a meet and confer session as a condition precedent to mediation and binding dispute resolution (see Section 7.2).  B101-2017 does not contain such a provision. 
  • B106-2020 allows either party to terminate the agreement for convenience and without cause (see Section 8.4), whereas B101-2017 only allows the owner to terminate the agreement in such a manner.
  • The compensation provisions of B106-2020 are significantly different than in B101-2017 as the architect will not be financially compensated for its services in B106-2020 (see Article 9). B106-2020 does allow the architect non-monetary compensation for its services in the form of recognition as a donor. B106-2020 also allows the architect to be reimbursed for its expenses on the project in Section 9.4. 

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