The role of dutyholders
The Building Regulations 2010 as amended in 2023 introduced the role of dutyholders.
There are three new dutyholders defined in the amended regulations:
Client / Domestic Clients - previously known as the Applicant
Principal Designer - previously known as the Agent
Principal Contractor – previously known as the Builder
The regulations tell us that all dutyholders are obliged to have arrangements and systems in place to plan, manage and monitor both the design work and the building work to ensure compliance with building regulations.
This includes residential homeowners who may be embarking on a project for the first time. Residential homeowners are referred to as Domestic Clients.
The duty to ensure compliance remains with those who procure the building work and those who have key roles in the design and construction process and who are responsible for ensuring that building work is designed and built to be compliant with building regulations. The dutyholders are required to work together to ensure that the project complies with the requirements of the regulations and ultimately ensures that the Building Control Body can issue its completion certificate.
Clients (including domestic clients) need to ensure that those they appoint are competent (have the necessary, skills, knowledge, experience and behaviours) or if they appoint an organisation, the organisational capability, to carry out the design work and building work they are engaged to do and only undertake work within the limits of that competence.
A dutyholder can be an organisation or an individual, and a dutyholder can carry out the role of more than one dutyholder, provided they have the skills, knowledge, experience and (if an organisation) the organisational capability and competence necessary to carry out those roles.
Main duties of each stakeholder