10 Dec 2009: Boring but important …

Don’t break the law.  Here are a few pieces of legislation which you might fall foul of:

  • Disability Discrimination Act 1995
    This act requires those who provide goods, facilities and services to the public to make ‘reasonable’ provisions for the disabled.  You may need to carry out an ‘access audit’ to make sure you are complying.
  • Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005
    This requires the ‘responsible person’ of non-domestic premises and common parts of multi-tenanted residential accommodation to have a fire risk assessment carried out by a ‘competent person’.
  • Planning (Listed Building and Conservation Areas) Act 1990
    If you make any alterations or repairs to the fabric of a Listed Building you will probably need Listed Buildings consent.
  • The Building Regulations 2000
    Most new buildings and alterations need Building Regulations approval.  There are some exemptions, notably in agriculture, but an office on a farm, for example, does need Building Regulations approval.
  • Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007
    This requires the (non-domestic) client of any construction project that will take over 30 days, to appoint a CDM Coordinator to help make sure that the construction process proceeds safely.
  • Landlord and Tenant Act 1927
    Many leases outline what maintenance and repair the tenant should carry out.  A Schedule of condition at the beginning of a lease and a Schedule of dilapidations towards the end allows the Landlord to make sure that the tenant pays for what he is liable for.
  • Party Wall etc Act 1996
    If you are carrying out work on a shared (party) wall, boundary wall, or excavating within 6m of a neighbouring property you should find out if you need to issue a Notice under the Part Wall etc Act.

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Daniel Sutherland