Do you own a rental property?

If the answer is yes, whether commercial or residential, then read on to avoid being fined up to $50,000.

In 2016 the Health and Safety at Work (Asbestos) Regulations (Regs) came into force. Don’t be fooled by the reference to “at work” in the title, it includes any person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU), which includes you, as a landlord.
The basic rule is that you are prohibited from allowing work on your rental property to occur, whatever form that work may take, where there is, or likely to be, the presence of asbestos or asbestos containing material (ACM). To do otherwise could result in fines of up to $50,000.

However, there are exceptions to this prohibition. Work involving asbestos may be allowed on your property in certain circumstances, such as if that work is for genuine research and analysis, sampling and identification, removal or disposal of asbestos (including demolition work), demonstrations, education or practical training in relation to asbestos or ACM, firefighting, or responding to an emergency.

As a landlord intending to have work carried out at your rental, be it a plumber, painter, builder, or something else entirely, you are required by the Regs to identify if asbestos or ACMs are present at the property and, if so, have an asbestos management plan in place before 4 April 2018. This management plan must be kept up to date and include information on:

  • The identification of asbestos or ACM and where it is on the property;
  • Decisions, and reasons for decisions, about the management of the risk arising from exposure to asbestos;
  • Procedures for detailing incidents or emergencies involving asbestos; and
  • For workers who carry out work involving asbestos:

These obligations apply equally to organisations that employ staff and who operate from a workplace.

4 April 2018 is just around the corner. So, don’t be caught out. Make sure you are complying with these Regs. For further information, please contact Stephen Jeffery or Andrew Shaw.

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