CDM 2015 / Regulations and Client Responsibilities

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The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM) places responsibilities on various duty holders for construction work. These duty holders include: Clients, Domestic Clients, Designers, Principal Designers, Principal Contractors, Contractors and Workers.

Domestic Clients

Domestic clients are people who have construction work carried out on their own home, or the home of a family member that is not done as part of a business, whether for profit or not. Domestic clients are in scope of CDM 2015, but their duties as a client are normally transferred to either the contractor, on a single contractor project or the principle contractor, on a project involving more than one contractor. However, the domestic client can choose to have a written agreement with the principle designer to carry out the client duties.

Most clients, particularly those who only occasionally commission construction work, will not be experts in the construction process. For this reason, they are not required to take an active role in managing the work. However, the client is required to make suitable arrangements for managing the project so that health, safety and welfare is secured.

What must a client do?

Many clients, particularly those who only occasionally have construction work done, are not experts in construction work. Although you are not expected to actively manage or supervise the work yourself, you have a big influence over the way the work is carried out. Whatever the size of your project, you decide which designer and contractor will carry out the work and how much money, time and resource is available. The decisions you make have an impact on the health, safety and welfare of workers and others affected by the work. CDM 2015 is not about creating unnecessary and unhelpful processes and paperwork. It is about choosing the right team and helping them to work together to ensure health and safety. As a client, you need to do the following:

  1. Appoint the right people at the right time
  2. Ensure there are arrangements in place for managing and organising the project
  3. Allow adequate time
  4. Provide information to your designer and contractor
  5. Communication with your designer and building contractor
  6. Ensure adequate welfare facilities on site
  7. Ensure a construction phase plan is in place
  8. Keep the health and safety file
  9. Protecting members of the public, including your employees
  10. Ensure workplaces are designed correctly

The information provided above, references the CDM Regulations 2015 and guidance on regulations by HSE.

A copy of the CDM Regulations 2015 and guidance on regulations are available to download from the HSE website:

Also, a short guide for clients on the CDM Regulations 2015 is available to download from the HSE website: