Conflict of interest guidance for Building Control inspectors

Building control inspector (image: Dreamstime)
New guidance indicates what constitutes conflict of interest for Building Control inspectors (Image: Dreamstime)

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has updated its guidance on registered building inspectors to include details about what constitutes a conflict of interest.

HSE specifies that registered building inspectors must not undertake work, or continue to undertake work, where a conflict of interest is identified. 

A conflict of interest can include: 

  • political: such as holding the position of councillor in the area a registered building inspector is allocated to complete a building project; 
  • financial: such as ownership in a company a registered building inspector is called to inspect; 
  • relationships: such as completing or contributing to Building Control work with friends or relatives;
  • personal: such as a registered building inspector not wanting a certain type of building near their home.

HSE mandates registered building inspectors to identify potential and actual conflicts of interest before starting and during work.

If a conflict of interest is identified, a registered building inspector must notify their employer immediately.

Registered building inspectors found to be guilty of professional misconduct could face sanctions.

A new Building Control profession

Registered building inspectors are a new role created under the Building Safety Act 2022. They can issue compliance notices and stop notices for higher-risk buildings during any stage of the design and construction process.

From 6 April, Building Control professionals must be registered with the Building Safety Regulator. They also need to complete an independent competency assessment.

However, after some concerns raised by the Local Authority Building Control chief executive about the 6 April deadline to undergo certification, building inspectors in England now have until 6 July 2024 to complete their competency assessment and upgrade their registration.

Registered building inspectors who still haven’t been assessed are registered as class 1 building inspectors and can only work under supervision.

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