Does CDM 2015 apply to domestic projects and domestic clients? header image

21st July, 2015

Does CDM 2015 apply to domestic projects and domestic clients?

The requirements for domestic projects and domestic clients are a little different under the 2015 version of the CDM Regulations.

Under the 2007 CDM regulations, domestic projects were exempt from notification, key duty holders did not need to be appointed and domestic clients were free from duties under CDM. But all that has changed under the new CDM 2015 regulations.

Unlike CDM 2007, CDM 2015 applies in full to domestic projects.

So domestic projects (residential works carried out on a clients own home or that of a family member) must still comply in full with CDM 2015.

If the work meets the threshold for notification, it must be notified to the HSE.

If the work involves more than one contractor, a Principal Contractor and Principal Designer must be appointed.

So what of the domestic client, do they have duties under CDM 2015?

Domestic clients duties are transferred because domestic clients are not expected to be familiar with the requirements of CDM 2015.

Duties do apply to domestic clients under CDM 2015, however, their duties are usually transferred to another member of the project team.

Client duties are automatically transferred on a domestic project to:

  • the contractor, on a single contractor project; or;
  • the principal contractor, on a project involving more than one contractor.

Alternatively, on domestic projects, the domestic client can choose to have a written agreement with the principal designer to carry out the client duties.

Who is the Principal Designer? Unlike other project types, in domestic work, if there is no written agreement then any designer in charge of coordinating and managing the project is assumed to be the principal designer.

As any other duty holder on a domestic project (e.g. designers and contractors, principal designers and principal contractors), you will have the same requirements on domestic works as you do on any other construction project.

You may even have additional requirements because the duties of the domestic client are transferred to the principal contractor (or contractor if only one). The duties can also be transferred to the principal designer if in writing.

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