The draft Building Safety Bill (BSB) is currently passing through the legislative legal processes before becoming UK law towards the end of 2022. This update provides Keelagher Okey Klein’s considered opinion of the present position and further detailed updates will be provided when they become known.

It is important to remember that the BSB does not replace the Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015). Compliance with the requirements of the BSB will be in addition to the compliance with the statutory duties already set out in CDM 2015. Confusingly, the names of the different duty holders in each set of regulations have the same name title, despite the roles being significantly different.

The BSB is aimed at High Rise Residential Buildings (HRRB) over 18m tall or 7 storey’s, whichever occurs first. However, industry discussions indicate the intention is to drive this into lower rise multi-occupied buildings in the future.

The introduction of the BSB set out rights for residents and homeowners, powers and protections – making HRRB’s across the country safer (note slightly differing Regulations will apply to Scotland and Wales also). A number of other associated statutory regulations are also being revised as part of these reforms including an independent review of the Building Regulations and Fire Safety Order 2005, creating lasting generational change, setting out a clear pathway on how residential buildings should be constructed, maintained and made safe. For developers, designers, contractors and building safety managers, this will bring significant change to the industry, and government spokesperson the “biggest changes to building safety for nearly 40 years.”

New projects will be overseen by a new regulator (already in place) and a new Gateway procedure that will prevent projects progressing until each Gateway has been signed off.

The scale and reach of these changes will undoubtedly have significant consequences for all of those who work in construction and are likely to result in increased compliance requirements, not only for projects, but also for the competencies of all those directly employed.

Keelagher Okey Klein will continue to keep our Clients and industry colleagues appraised as the time for implementation arrives.