Q&As

If an employer asks a contractor to build something that will not comply with the Building Regulations, is there any duty that can be imposed on that contractor to inform the employer that the build will not comply?

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Produced in partnership with Abdul Jinadu of Keating Chambers
Published on LexisPSL on 02/11/2020

The following Construction Q&A Produced in partnership with Abdul Jinadu of Keating Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • If an employer asks a contractor to build something that will not comply with the Building Regulations, is there any duty that can be imposed on that contractor to inform the employer that the build will not comply?

The question relates specifically to an obligation on the contractor to inform the employer that what he is asked to build does not comply with the Building Regulations 2010 (the Building Regulations), SI 2010/2214. This implies that the contractor had no part in preparing the design and plans for the work.

If there is an express term in the contract that the contractor will check the proposed design and confirm compliance with the Building Regulations, SI 2010/2214 then clearly the contractor will have a contractual duty to warn of any prospective failure to comply with the Building Regulations, SI 2010/2214 when the works are completed.

The Joint Contracts Tribunal (JCT) standard forms contain relevant express obligations in respect of compliance with the Building Regulations, SI 2010/2214.

In the JCT Minor Works standard form Clause 2.1.1 provides that:

'…the Contractor shall carry out and complete the Works in a proper and workmanlike manner in compliance with the Contract Documents, the Construction Phase Plan and Statutory Requirements, and shall give all notices required by the Statutory Requirements.'

Clause 2.5.1 of the same standard form provides that:

'…if the Contractor becomes aware o

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