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NSW – HENDRY building certifiers advise it is important for building owners and managers to know the accreditation status of the Accredited Certifier they are using for fit outs/ alterations and to understand the regulatory framework for private certification (Certifying Authority) in NSW, within which the Accredited Certifier must work.

The Building Professionals Act 2005 was proclaimed on the 25 January 2007 and allowed the newly formed NSW Building Professionals Board (BPB) to commence accrediting an applicant as as an accredited certifier, hear complaints against an accredited certifier, and carry out investigations into the work and activities of certifying authorities from the 1 March 2007 onwards.

An accredited certifier, dependant upon the accreditation type and level held, act as certifying authorities, in addition to local councils which are also certifying authorities, to issue complying development certificates, construction certificates, subdivision/ strata certificates and final occupation certificates. Many engineers are also accredited to issue compliance certificates for works within their field of expertise. In recent years, private accredited certifiers were responsible for up to 30% of all construction and occupation certificates and almost 50% of all complying development certificates.

In their first year, the BPB converted 450 existing accredited certifiers into one accreditation scheme, determined 47 complaints against accredited certifiers, including issuing fines, published a disciplinary register on their website and referred 15 additional matters to the Administrative Decisions Tribunal.

As a building owner, property manager, or facility manager, it is important for you to know the status of the Accredited Certifier. Seek recommendations, check references, and contact the BPB to confirm their type, level, accreditation status and history, and any limitations that may exist on their accreditation.