The Building Control Authority (BCA) is charged by central government to ensure within its areas that any building works are constructed in a safe, healthy manner and are also provided with adequate access for the disabled, and have provision for energy conservation.
The Building Control Authority carries out these duties firstly by the checking of submitted plans and the inspection of building works during construction. (This in itself is deemed enforcement.)
If this does not happen and works are carried out without permission or in such a way as to contravene the building regulations, then the authority will:-
- Seek retrospective applications (see Regularisation submission)
- Explain the contraventions
- Look at initial process of written warnings
- Seek a proportional response to the taking of formal enforcement action
- Ensure that notifications are placed on the Land Charges Register (preventing sale)
- Withhold completion certificates (see item above)
- Only where there is persistent or no attempt to work with the BCA instigate formalised legal action
- Any action listed above wherever appropriate will be co-ordinated with other statutory services involved in the same building (in line with the Enforcement Concordant).
Other points to be noted:-
- Failure to submit an application or provide notification of building works is an automatic contravention of the Building Regulations (unlike Planning where the authority must first consider whether it is expectant to take enforcement action).
- Failure to seek building regulations will in cases relating to Fire Safety, Drainage (Sewers), Disability Access, Health and Safety at Work may have other implications by creating contraventions under other legislation
- There is no statutory or enforcement link between Planning legislation and Building Control legislation. They are completely independent statutory systems.
Other areas which the Building Control Service enforces are:- Dangerous, Demolition, Local Act and Building over Sewers.