Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Thirty-Third Report


Memorandum by the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions


1. The Committee has requested a memorandum from the Department on the following point:

    "Regulation 6(4) provides that, where an approved inspector has been convicted of an offence under section 57 of the Building Act 1984 (false or misleading notices and certificates), the person by whom the approval was given may on receipt of a certificate of the conviction withdraw the approval. In what circumstances is it contemplated that, notwithstanding the conviction of the inspector, the approval would not be withdrawn?"

2. The Committee will be aware that, in providing that withdrawal shall not be mandatory, the Building (Approved Inspectors etc) Regulations 2000 maintain the position subsisting immediately before they come into force. (Until an amendment was made in 1995, withdrawal had, under the relevant regulations, been mandatory.)

3. The circumstances in which it is contemplated that approval may not be withdrawn include the following:-

    (a)  the conviction resulted from the actions of an apparently well qualified person to whom tasks had been delegated under section 49(8) of the Building Act 1984 (c.55) ("the 1984 Act"), and the inspector has taken steps to reduce the possibility of similar errors occurring in future;

    (b)  in the case of an inspector that is a corporate body, the conviction resulted from the actions of an individual who has been dismissed, and appropriate steps have been taken to reduce the possibility of similar events occurring in future;

    (c)  the offence is considered insufficiently serious to warrant withdrawal, taking into account whether the offence was under paragraph (a) or paragraph (b) of section 57(1) of the 1984 Act and the extent to which the relevant statement was false or misleading in one or more material particulars.

20 November 2000

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