CDM Regulations


Karen Elder asks – Are you ready for the new CDM Regulations 2015?

Understanding the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM 2015) is essential for everyone involved in or advising on construction, development or redevelopment work in Great Britain. The CDM 2015 apply to almost all construction projects from 6 April 2015. Criminal sanctions apply to a breach of the CDM 2015 and as such a good basic working knowledge of these obligations is of paramount importance from a contractual, health and safety and insurance perspective. The CDM 2015 apply to projects that were not previously caught by the CDM Regulations 2007 (which the CDM 2015 replace with effect from 6 April 2015). In a nutshell the key changes made by the CDM 2015 include:

  • Abolishing the role of ‘CDM co-ordinator’. A ‘principal designer’ must now co-ordinate the pre-construction phase if the project uses more than one contractor/subcontractor.
  • Further enhancing the role of the client. The gradual shift of placing key health and safety responsibility on the client therefore continues. The CDM 2015 apply to domestic clients (that is, those not acting in the course or furtherance of business, whether or not for profit). However, they include provisions easing a domestic client’s compliance burden.
  • Simplifying how parties assess competence, including organisational competence. For clients themselves on building projects and those advising or funding clients on such projects, the CDM 2015 place the client centrally to the new approach to managing health and safety on site and this is an ongoing obligation.

The absolute obligations are threefold:

  1. Provision of preconstruction information
  2. Provision of a construction phase plan
  3. Preparation of a health and safety file by the principle designer

The CDM 2015 apply to all projects, regardless of when those projects commenced. However, for projects that had already commenced on 6 April 2015 (the effective date of the CDM 2015), transitional arrangements. These are fairly detailed and clients, construction professionals and funders alike are advised to review all construction projects that span 6 April 2015 to ensure compliance.

For further information and advice on the CDM 2015 contact Karen Elder at Beswicks Legal on 01782 205000 or