Section 12(b) of the Building Work Contractors Act 1995 (SA) (the Act) provides that a licensed building work contractor must ensure that building work of any kind performed under the contractor’s licence is properly supervised by a registered building work supervisor.
Failure by a building work contractor to ensure proper supervision of building work may result in cancellation or suspension of the contractor’s licence, conditions being imposed on the licence or disciplinary action.
“Properly supervising” building work means that a supervisor should at least undertake:
The standard required to meet the proper supervision obligation does not vary for building work of differing value. That is, low-cost building work requires the same standard as higher cost building work.
The courts have acknowledged that the duty has limits, noting that it would not extend to the supervisor being required to:
Where the building work is unable to be observed once completed (e.g. footings) or where one contractor is required to follow another (e.g. plastering work following masonry work), the supervisor is required to:
It will not be sufficient for the supervisor to:
This article provides general comments only. It does not purport to be legal advice. Before acting on the basis of any material contained in this article, we recommend that you seek professional advice.
Tom Dachs, Principal in our Disputes Team
Direct Telephone: +61 8 8210 2234