CDM 2015

CDM 2015


The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015



For further advice on the new regulations, to discuss specific projects, contracts or frameworks, to arrange a consultation/briefing or to obtain training please contact John Okey or any of our Health and Safety Advisors on 01925 654158.

There is an extensive use of the word ”˜must’ throughout the regulations, which means an absolute or strict requirement for a regulation to be complied with regardless of time, cost or effort. No more “reasonable”. This is far more binding than the current iteration. The duties are now more onerous and the liability to prosecution or Fees for Intervention (FFI) increased.



More focus on Client as head of supply chain to set standards throughout the project. CDM 2015 makes the Client criminally accountable for the impact which their decisions and approach have on health, safety and welfare on the project. The Client must maintain and review site-specific construction Project Health, Safety and Welfare arrangements to ensure they remain relevant throughout the life of the project. This increased responsibility will be backed by increased fines for H&S breaches by the Client and others, including the option for a custodial sentence for serious breaches. However, the guidance states that the Client “could draw on the competent advice they are required to have under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999”.

1) The Client must ensure that the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor comply with their duties throughout the project.

2) Principal Designer (PD) to be appointed with duties which include ensuring that all designers are fulfilling their duty to design out hazards and reduce risk  during construction, maintenance and end use.

3) The formal CDM Coordinator role is removed (no more statutory duty to be the Clients best friend), with those responsibilities passed to the Client and Principal Designer on even more onerous terms. Last year, a prominent HSE spokesman suggested that it would be many, many years before many main designers have the organisational capacity, skills, experience and knowledge to be up to Principal Designer duties.

4) Principal Designer and Principal Contractor must be appointed for all projects upon which there is more than just one contractor (e.g. one trade) appointed, including those for domestic Clients.

5) A Construction Phase Plan is required for all projects even if there is only one contractor. The Client must ensure that this exists and is fit for purpose prior to any work on site.

6) Changes to notification thresholds.  Notification to the HSE will not be the trigger for appointing the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor. Unlike the current CDM2007 Regulations, notification of a project to the HSE will only be necessary where sites employ more than 20 workers at any one time and the construction phase exceeds 30 working days, or involves more than 500 person days. This will result in far more projects attracting the full requirement of the CDM Regulations, but fewer F10s.

7) Explicit competence requirements are replaced by requirements for skills, knowledge, experience and organisational capability.  For most projects the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor appointments will be for a company rather than an individual.

There are transitional provisions within the new Regulations such that CDM-C appointments made for current Projects extending beyond 6 April 2015 can continue until 6 October 2015. Before the expiry of this period the Client will have the legal duty to appoint a competent and adequately resourced Principal Designer.

Abstract from HSE Guidance Book : Summary of roles and duties under CDM 2015:

CDM Dutyholders* ”“ Who are they? Summary of role/main duties
Clients – are organisations or individuals for whom a construction project is carried out. Make suitable arrangements for managing a project. This includes making sure:

– other dutyholders are appointed;

– sufficient time and resources are allocated;

Making sure:

– relevant information is prepared and provided to other dutyholders;

– the principal designer and principal contractor carry out their duties;

See paragraphs 23-52 for more guidance

These are absolute duties for the entire duration of the project.

– welfare facilities are provided.

See paragraphs 23-52 for more guidance

Domestic clients – are people who have construction work carried out on their own home, or the home of a family member that is not done as part of a business, whether for profit or not. Domestic clients are in scope of CDM 2015, but their duties as a client are normally transferred to:

– the contractor, on a single contractor project;


– the principal contractor, on a project involving more than one contractor.

However the domestic client can choose to have a written agreement with the principal designer to carry out the client duties
See paragraphs 94-115 for more guidance.

Designers ”“ are those, who as part of a business, prepare or modify designs for a building, product or system relating to construction work. When preparing or modifying designs, to eliminate, reduce or control foreseeable risks that may arise during:

– construction; and

– the maintenance and use of a building once it is built

Provide information to other members of the project team to help them fulfill their duties.
See paragraphs 72 ”“ 93 for more guidance.

Principal Designers** – are designers appointed by the client in projects involving more than one contractor. They can be an organisation or an individual with sufficient knowledge, experience and ability to carry out the role. Plan, manage, monitor and coordinate health and safety in the pre-construction phase of a project. This includes:

– identifying, eliminating or controlling foreseeable risks;

– ensuring designers carry out their duties

Prepare and provide relevant information to other duty holders

Liaise with the principal contractor to help in the planning, management, monitoring and coordination of the construction phase.
See paragraphs 94 ”“ 115 for more guidance.

Principal Contractors ”“ are contractors appointed by the client to coordinate the construction phase of a project where it involves more than one contractor. Plan, manage, monitor and coordinate the construction phase of a project. This includes:

– liaising with the client and principal designer;

– preparing the construction phase plan;

– organising cooperation between contractors and coordinating their work.


– suitable site inductions are provided;

– reasonable steps are taken to prevent unauthorised access;

– workers are consulted and engaged in securing their health and safety; and

– welfare facilities are provided.

See paragraphs 110 ”“ 146 for more guidance.

Contractors ”“ are those who do the actual construction work and can be either an individual or a company Plan, manage and monitor construction work under their control so that it is carried out without risks to health and safety;

For projects involving more than one contractor, coordinate their activities with others in the project team ”“ in particular, comply with directions given to them by the principal designer or principal contractor;

For single-contractor projects, prepare a construction phase plan.

See paragraphs 147 ”“ 179 for more guidance.

Workers ”“ are the people who work for or under the control of contractors on a construction site They must:

– be consulted about matters which affect their health, safety and welfare;

– take care of their own health and safety and others who may be affected by their actions;

– report anything they see which is likely to endanger either their own or others’ health and safety;

– cooperate with their employer, fellow workers, contractors and other duty holders;

* Organisations or individuals can carry out the role of more than one duty holder, provided

they  have  the  skills,  knowledge,  experience  and  (if  an  organisation)  the  organisational capability necessary to carry out those roles in a way that secures health and safety.

** Principal designers replace the role undertaken by CDM co-ordinators under CDM 2007 (see paragraphs [191-194] for information about transitional arrangements). KOK Note: This is clearly not the case as the Client now bears some of those duties. Furthermore, the duties are now more extensive and onerous.




Keelagher Okey Klein meet the requirements for Designer under the proposed Regulations and therefore KOK will undertake the duties ofPrincipal Designer (PD) for the duration of our commissions in compliance with the Draft Guidance on The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 at the initially agreed fee. Furthermore KOK are competent and will continue to provide Independent Health and Safety Advice to Clients, thereby ensuring a seamless transition to the new regulations without deterioration of control over health and safety matters and ensuring continued compliance with legal requirement at all stages of the project. We will provide both these services for all new and existing commissions before and after 6 April 2015 and continue until the next review of the Regulations due in 2020.


Our local team of Independent Health and Safety Advisors will continue to provide services in the manner which we have been doing for many years which has for some time substantially met both the new Principal Designer and the new Client duties.


On behalf of our current Clients and various Project Team members, KOK are currently interrogating the detail of the changes and preparing briefings and guidance for all Clients, Designers and Contractors.

Furthermore we will provide support services and training to Designers and Contractors, particularly in their roles as Principal Designer or Principal Contractor, and those persons or organisations newly affected by the inclusion of small projects or domestic projects into the scope of the new Regulations.


Nota Bene:


a) The new arrangements need to be  confirmed in writing,

b) We must make sure that Clients are aware of the additional and more onerous duties and activities which are required of the Client, Principal Designer and Principal Contractor (PC)  on all projects where there are more than one Contractor (trades) on site,

c) We must determine how the Client, PD and PC roles will be tackled on those projects which do not currently require a CDMC but will after 6th April 2015 require far more extensive compliance with the Regulations,

d) A number of other less onerous tasks need to be addressed which KOK are happy to discuss,

e) Training or retraining of all new and existing duty holders,

f) Competence and resourcing and the provision of evidence of such bearing in mind the current paucity of reliable guidance.


For further advice on the new regulations, to discuss specific projects, contracts or frameworks, to arrange a consultation/briefing or to obtain training please contact John Okey or any of our Health and Safety Advisors on 01925 654158.