On 19 September 2023, the Government issued new guidance for accountable persons (APs) of high-rise residential buildings.
The AP is an organisation or individual who owns or has a legal obligation to repair any common parts of a building, for example, the exterior, corridors, lobbies and staircases. Examples of an AP are:
Each building must also have one clearly identifiable accountable person, known as the principal accountable person (PAP). If there is just one AP for a building, then they are the PAP. When there are multiple APs, then whoever owns or has a legal obligation to repair the structure and exterior of the building is the PAP.
APs and PAPs can employ an organisation or individual, like a managing agent, to carry out duties on their behalf; however, they cannot delegate their legal obligations to others. Accountability for making sure their duties are carried out and the liability for the safety of a building remains with the AP and PAP.
The law says APs must take all reasonable steps to “prevent building safety risks from happening, and to reduce the severity of any incidents” if they do happen.
The Building Safety Act 2022 defines building safety risks as the risk of spread of fire or structural failure.
How can the AP manage ‘building safety risks’?
For further information, please contact:
Associate Kathryn Quinley in our Crime & Regulatory team
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