What are the Principal Contractors Legal Duties under CDM 2015?

What are the CDM Regulations?

Whatever your role in construction, Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM) aims to improve health and safety in the industry by helping you to:

  • sensibly plan the work so the risks involved are managed from start to finish
  • have the right people for the right job at the right time
  • cooperate and coordinate your work with others
  • have the right information about the risks and how they are being managed
  • communicate this information effectively to those who need to know
  • consult and engage with workers about the risks and how they are being managed

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What are the Responsibilities for Principal Contractor?

The Principal Contractor must:

  • plan, manage, monitor and coordinate the entire construction phase
  • take account of the health and safety risks to everyone affected by the work (including members of the public), in planning and managing the measures needed to control them
  • liaise with the client and Principal Designer for the duration of the project to ensure that all risks are effectively managed
  • prepare a written Construction Phase Plan before the construction phase begins, implement, and then regularly review and revise it to make sure it remains fit for purpose
  • have ongoing arrangements in place for managing health and safety throughout the construction phase
  • consult and engage with workers about their health, safety and welfare
  • ensure suitable welfare facilities are provided from the start and maintained throughout the construction phase
  • check that  anyone they appoint has the skills, knowledge, experience and, where relevant, the organisational capability to carry out their work safely and without risk to health
  • ensure all workers have site-specific inductions, and any further information and training they need
  • take steps to prevent unauthorised access to the site
  • liaise with the principal designer to share any information relevant to the planning, management, monitoring and coordination of the pre-construction phase
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When working for a domestic Client, the principal contractor will normally take on the client duties as well as their own as principal contractor. If a domestic client does not appoint a principal contractor, the role of the principal contractor must be carried out by the contractor in control of the construction phase. Alternatively, the domestic client can ask the principal designer to take on the client duties (although this must be confirmed in a written agreement) and the principal contractor must work to them as ‘client’ under CDM 2015

Further details from the HSE are detailed on the link below-


If you are unsure of your duties under CDM why not try our CDM Awareness e-Learning training. You can sign up to try the first module for FREE by pressing here!

Alternatively you can contact me using the details below and I’ll give you some advice on your legal responsibilities under CDM 2015.


This blog was written by Dean Oliver CMIOSH

Web – www.oliverhealthandsafety.co.uk

Email – [email protected]

Phone – 0800 772 3950