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Legal changes

Building Safety Act 2022 continues to evolve

Our Building Safety Claims team continues to monitor developments arising from the BSA to bring you the latest updates

Read our previous updates 

New responsibilities for ‘responsible persons’

New fire safety requirements from 1 October 2023

The Government has issued new guidance on what responsible persons under the Building Safety Act 2022 (“the BSA”) will be required to do from 1 October 2023.  Section 156 of the BSA amends the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (“the FSO”) to provide additional responsibilities for responsible persons.

Which buildings are covered?

The new requirements apply to all non-residential premises, and the non-residential parts of residential buildings including common areas, stairways and plant rooms (paragraph 6(1) of the FSO).

Who is a responsible person?

Under the FSO, a responsible person is: (i) the employer in the context of a workplace; (ii) the person with control of the premises where they have control in connection with carrying on a trade, business or undertaking; or (iii) the owner where the person in control of the premises does not have control in connection with carrying on a trade, business or undertaking.

The responsible person has a number of duties under the FSO which have been added to by Section 156 of the BSA.  The new responsibilities are discussed below.

Section 156 also increases the level of fine for offences under the FSO, including for failure without reasonable excuse to comply with any requirements imposed by an inspector.  Such fines will no longer be limit to level 3 on the standard scale.

  1. Provision of information to residents

Where the building contains at least two sets of domestic premises, the responsible person has a duty to give residents “comprehensible and relevant information” about fire safety matters, which includes but is not limited to:

  • any risks identified in a risk assessment and what preventative and or protective measures have been taken; and
  • the names of the responsible person and any person they have appointed to assist with making or reviewing a risk assessment.
  1. Provision of information to new responsible person

Where a person ceases to be a responsible person and the role is to be assumed by another, the outgoing responsible person will be required to provide any relevant fire safety information that the hold to the new responsible person, this information includes but is not limited to:

  • any records kept of assessments or reviews carried out;
  • the name of any person appointed to assist with making or reviewing an assessment or the name of any other responsible person in relation to the premises; and
  • where the premises are a higher-risk building (as defined in Section 65 of the BSA), the identity of any accountable person (as defined in Section 72 of the BSA) where known.
  1. Co-operation with accountable persons

The responsible person will also have a duty to co-operate with the accountable person in relation to any building that includes a residential unit in a higher risk building. The responsible person must take such steps as a re reasonably practicable to ascertain who the accountable persons are and must co-operate with them for the purposes of the accountable person’s duties under the BSA.

  1. Recording information

Responsible persons will also have duties to record information as follows:

  • completed fire risk assessments in full;
  • the identity of the individual and/or organisation engaged to undertake or review and fire risk assessments;
  • all fire safety arrangements;
  • their own contact information and UK address
  1. Risk assessments (not yet enacted)

There will also be a duty not to appoint any person to assist with making or reviewing a risk assessment unless that person has sufficient training and experience or knowledge to enable the person to assist. There is also a duty to ensure that where more than one person is appointed in relation to a risk assessment, arrangements must be made to ensure adequate co-operation. This duty is not yet being brought into force.

For further information please contact the author of this insight James Garner, Solicitor by phone on 020 7822 1915 or email

The Cladding Remediation Works (Code of Practice) Bill has its first reading in Parliament


Published 22 May 2023

A Bill has been proposed to introduce a new industry-wide Code of Practice developed by residents and those within the construction industry, to govern cladding remediation works being undertaken as a result of the Building Safety Act 2022 and the Fire Safety Act 2021.

It is designed to continue the endeavour to ensure that residents are protected and that their needs are not disregarded within the vast cladding remediation schemes.

The intention is that residents will have visibility of the works being undertaken, and an understanding of the timescales and disruption expected. Whilst some disruption to residents is inevitable, the Code of Practice will encompass standards on how remediation works to cladding systems are being carried out, such as the materials used when securing the building so that the residents still have access to light and ventilation which has previously not been enforced.

The bill will have its second reading on 24 November 2023.

Pace continues with the Building Safety Act 2022 with the advent of provisions coming into force

Published 30 March 2023

We will be providing commentary and analysis in due course; in the meantime, and by way of an acknowledgement, pace continues with the Building Safety Act 2022 with the advent of provisions coming into force on the 1 April 2023, 6 April and 1 October 2023. Full details may be found on the "The Building Safety Act 2022 (Commencement No. 4 and Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2023" page, however, of note, we highlight the following:

  • s.39 – this section is being brought into force on 6 April 2023 for the purpose of making regulations under s.35 of the Building Act 1984 and amends the same to include greater penalties for breaches of building regulations.
  • s.112 – this section amends the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, to insert implied terms into leases relating to building safety and recovery of safety related costs. This will be brought into force on 6 April.
  • s.133 – this section is being brought into force on 1 April 2023 for the purpose of making regulations, and amends the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 in relation to service charges. These amendments include that where possible Landlords must obtain all grants and funding they can (including from insurance policies, or by claims against third parties), and where this is achieved the funding is to be deducted from the remediation costs and the service charge reduced accordingly. Failure for the Landlord to do so may result in a tenant making an application.
  • s.144 and s.145 – are being brought into force on 6 April 2023, for the purpose of making regulations. Under these sections the Developer must enter into and provide new build home warranties to residents. The Secretary of State may make regulations on the provisions that these warranties must contain such as inter alia, the kind of defects covered, the policy of insurance, the solvency of the insurer/underwriter and the ability to transfer the benefit of the warranty. These regulations must state that the warranties must provide a period of cover of at least 15 years. Penalties for not providing new building home warranties are set out in s.145.

Decision paves the way for leaseholders to recover historic service charges associated with fire safety defects

Published 15 February 2023


The Building Safety Act 2022 (“BSA”) introduced several remedies against those responsible for buildings of at least eleven metres which suffer from fire safety defects or serious structural failure. Remedies included the power to make a Remediation Contribution Order (“RCO”), requiring those responsible to make payments to a specified person to meet costs incurred or to be incurred in rectifying defects.

On 13 January 2023, the First-Tier Tribunal Property Chamber heard one of the first applications for an RCO, on behalf of Arjun Batish and other leaseholders of a property in Sutton (“the Property”) -  See Batish and others v Inspired Sutton and others LON/00BF/HYI/2022/0002.


Inspired Sutton converted the Property in 2017 from offices into residential apartments. Following the tragedy at Grenfell Tower, Inspired Sutton and the leaseholders became aware that the materials used in the construction and design of the development constituted a significant fire safety risk. Remedial works were undertaken to rectify these defects, which involved the removal of unsafe cladding, replacement of the render and rectification and replacement of unsafe balconies. Remedial works commenced in February 2021 and the costs ran to approximately £193,000, which were funded by service charge requests levied against the leaseholders by Inspired Sutton.

Mr Batish, together with seventeen other leaseholders made an application under section 124 of the BSA for an RCO against Inspired Sutton. Leaseholders sought the entirety of the service charges paid in relation to the defects, adhering to the provisions contained within Schedule 8 of the BSA, limiting the service charge payable by leaseholders in respect of ‘relevant defects’.


Whilst section 124 of the BSA was not the subject of full argument as Inspired Sutton were debarred from taking part in proceedings, due to their failure to provide a statement of case, the Tribunal granted an RCO.

The Tribunal found that the Property was a ‘relevant building’ under the BSA as it was structurally detached and had at least five storeys.  In granting the order the Tribunal held: -

  1. The leaseholders were also ‘interested persons’ as they held legal interests in their properties and Inspired Sutton was a ‘relevant specified body corporate’ as defined within the BSA.
  2. The service charges paid by the leaseholders related to ‘relevant defects’ involving the remediation of the cladding and balcony defects that were found to be fire hazards. The Tribunal concluded that these were ‘building safety risks’ under the BSA.
  3. That it was just and reasonable for the order to be issued.
  4. Paragraph 2 of Schedule 8 states that no service charge is payable in respect of works relating to a relevant defect where the landlord is responsible for the 'relevant defect’. As a result, service charges should not have been levied against the leaseholders of the building, with Inspired Sutton expected to pay for these works, because of defects within their construction of the building.
  5. The granting of the RCO was ‘just and equitable’ in the circumstances.


The BSA does not provide guidance on what constitutes ‘just and equitable’ and whilst it is unfortunate that the Tribunal did not take the opportunity to provide guidance; the decision arguably paves the way for leaseholders to recover past service charges.

The latest step to have developers take responsibility for fire safety defects.

Published 31 January 2023

As of 9 August, 49 developers had signed a pledge committing to remediate life critical fire safety works in buildings over 11 metres that they had played a role in developing or refurbishing over the last 30 years in England. Following today’s publication of the Development Remediation Contract between Participant Developers and DLUHC, developers have six weeks to sign, failure to do so will be made public.
This is the latest step to have developers take responsibility for fire safety defects.
The publication has led to the announcement that legislation will be brought forward giving the Secretary of State powers to prevent developers from operating freely in the housing market if they fail to sign and comply with the remediation contract.
A positive move for those exposed to fire safety defects in buildings over 11 meters high; however, at what costs and to whom as the need for reimbursement is at the core of the contract.

Further obligations placed on responsible persons for buildings

Published 9 January 2023

The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022, due to come into force on 23 January 2023, place further obligations on responsible persons for buildings, to provide information to fire and rescue services, as well as providing additional safety measures to residents to mitigate the risk of and spread of fire.

The nature of the obligations imposed will vary, depending upon whether a development (i) comprises buildings containing two or more domestic areas with common parts, (ii) is between 11 and 18 metres (i.e., high rise buildings), and (iii) is 18 metres or over. Key obligations, which will be welcomed by residents, placed upon responsible persons are as follows: -

General obligations

  • Provide residents with an evacuation strategy and information as to how to report a fire
  • Provide residents with information about the operation of fire doors

Buildings between 11metres and 18 metres

  • Undertaking checks on fire doors - must be undertaken in communal areas at least every three months
  • Undertaking checks on all entrance doors at periods not exceeding 12 months and remedial works must be undertaken

Buildings over 18 metres

  • The design of the external walls of the building, including details of the materials used, must be prepared and provided to the local fire and rescue services and revised when any significant changes occur
  • A plan for each floor of a high-rise residential building must be prepared which identifies the location of all lifts and key fire-fighting equipment within the building
  • The design of the building and floor plans must be provided electronically to the local fire and rescue authority
  • A secure information box must be installed in or on the building accessible to the fire and rescue authority which contains the design of the building and floor plans as well as contact details for the person responsible for the building, and all people permitted to access the building
  • Monthly checks must be undertaken of firefighting or evacuation lifts and key fire-fighting equipment, and if a fault has been identified and cannot be rectified within 24 hours, notice must be given to the local fire and rescue authority
  • The building must have clear signage of floors and identifications of domestic premises.

Whilst welcomed by some, the cost associated with compliance will no doubt prove to be a contention moving forward.

Evidence session to take place in 2023 to discuss perceived gaps within the BSA - what will be covered?

Published 29 December 2022

The Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (“LUHC”) Committee and Lee Rowley MP (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Local Government and Building Safety)), have confirmed that they will convene in early 2023 at an evidence session to discuss perceived gaps within the BSA.

The agenda for this important meeting will be of interest to all impacted by the BSA. Of note the topics up for discussion include: 

  • the building safety repairs pledge to which developers have voluntarily signed up to remediate critical fire safety works in buildings over 11 metres for which they are responsible, which to date has not yet been enforced;
  • the liability of professional freeholders;
  • the remediation fund that has recently been announced for mid-range buildings 11-18 metres in height and whether residents in buildings less than 11 metres in height should be protected; and
  • the funding for non-cladding building safety works.

The funding or non-cladding building safety defects was the subject of previous discussion within the ‘Building safety: remediation and funding – government response to the Select Committee reports’ published on 16 May 2022, in which the cap on non-cladding costs for leaseholders was called to be scrapped. The Government’s response was that due to the other caps in place, and protections for leaseholders from the costs of the liability of the developer/landlord, the situation where a leaseholder would have to contribute to non-cladding building safety works was proportionate and would ensure that the necessary remediation works took place. 

Revisiting issues such as funding reflects the true impact of the BSA as an evolving environment, which continues to spawn novel issues for policyholders, insurers, landlords and developers. 


Further iteration coming into force on the 1 December 2022

Published  28 November 2022

As anticipated the Building Safety Act 2022 (‘BSA’) continues to evolve, with a further iteration coming into force on the 1 December 2022. Of note and of interest are:

  • Hostels, hotels and boarding houses now fall within the scope of the ban on the use of combustible materials;
  • Certain metal composite materials (metal composite materials with an unmodified polyethylene core) are now banned from being incorporated into external walls on all buildings as well as specified attachments of buildings (such as balconies or solar panels);
  • Solar shading devices/products will not be subject to the ban, however their components such as the slats or curtains will be;
  • The latest British Standard Fire classification has been inserted into the Building Regulations;
  • The ban on the use of metal composite materials will apply where there has been a material change of use to a building of 11 metres in height (previously 15 metres), but will only apply to existing buildings of 18 metres above ground level;
  • New definitions of ‘building’ and ‘building work’ have been inserted into the Building etc. (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2021, and Building etc. (Amendment) (England) (No.2) Regulations 2021.

For further information on the services we provide or if you are impacted by the BSA and would like to discuss any issues or concerns you may have please contact a member of our Building Safety Claims team

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