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13 November 2018 | Comment | Article by Iwan Jenkins

CDM 2015 – 8 Key Changes

The Construction (Design and Management) (CDM) Regulations are due to come in to force on 6th April 2015.

Below is a snapshot of 8 key changes

  1. Simpler Layout – There is significant structural simplification. The Regulations are much shorter and there is less duplication and repetition. The purpose behind this is to make it more attractive and user friendly for small to medium projects.
  2. Removal of CDM Co-ordinator – The role of CDM Co-ordinator is abolished and replaced by the Principal Designer, who must be a designer and have control over the Pre-Construction phase. The Principal Designer has to be appointed if there is more than one contractor (trade contractor) on site at one time. The Principal Designer must be appointed by the Client in writing and failure to appoint leaves the duties at the Client’s door.
  3. Notification – The 30 construction days test has been amended to 30 construction days with 20 or more workers working simultaneously. Notification no longer triggers additional duties. The new notification test is if there is more than one trade contractor on site. A Principal Contractor has to be appointed in such circumstances and has to be appointed in writing.
  4. Additional Client Duties – There are more onerous duties on the Client and a reduced role for the Principal Designer. In particular, the Client has to ensure that Principal Contractor has produced a Construction Phase Plan before any construction commences on site. In CDM 2007, the CDM Co-ordinator advised on the suitability of a Construction Phase Plan. In CDM 2015, there is no duty on the Principal Designer to review or advise on the suitability of the Construction Phase Plan. The Client has to take reasonable steps to ensure the Principal Designer and Principal Contractor comply with their duties. Notification is now a client duty (under CDM 2007 notification was a CDM Co-ordinator duty).
  5. Construction Phase Plan – Written Construction Phase Plans will now be required for all Construction Projects and not just notifiable projects.
  6. Competence – there is a move away from the competence bureaucracy as CDM 2007 was heavily criticised for its complex approach. There is a general requirement on the Client to ensure that duty holders can demonstrate appropriate information, instruction, training and supervision.
  7. ACOP – ACOP will be abolished and it is proposed that a mini ACOP will be published after April 2015.
  8. Domestic Clients – CDM 2015 now applies to domestic projects.

There are transitional arrangements to deal with projects underway and not complete as at 6th April 2015. A key aspect is to review current projects that are caught by the CDM2015 and identify what is required in relation to the CDM Co-ordinator role.

In relation to any projects about to start before or after 6th April the project suite of documentation requires review to ensure it complies with the new legislation. Development agreements, building contracts, consultant appointments and consultant framework agreements will all have to be assessed and possibly amended to align with the new regulations and this should be done before documentation is finalised.

Author bio

Iwan advises on non-contentious construction matters and has prepared and negotiated documentation on a wide variety of projects. He has advised on building contracts, appointments, development agreements, construction security documentation and all associated documentation. Iwan has advised public sector clients in social housing, education, local and national government as well as contractors, consultants, sub-contractors, developers and funders in the private sector. Iwan has a particular interest and expertise in framework agreements and collaborative construction contracts.

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