HSE begins cost recovery

The HSE’s new Fee for Intervention (FFI) cost recovery scheme is now in force.

As of Monday 1st October 2012, those in material breach of health and safety legislation are liable for recovery of HSE’s related costs, including inspection, investigation and taking enforcement action, under the Health and Safety (Fees) Regulations 2012 (SI 2012/1652).

Geoffrey Podger, Chief Executive of HSE, said: “It is right that those who fail to meet their legal obligations should pay HSE’s costs rather than the public purse having to do so.

“FFI provides a further incentive for businesses to manage health and safety effectively and to operate within the law. It should also help level the playing field between those who comply and those who don’t.

“Costs will be recovered where there has been a material breach of health and safety law. A material breach is where a business or organisation has broken the law and the inspector judges it serious enough to notify them in writing.”

Businesses that comply with their legal obligations will not be affected, however those found to be making a material breach will pay the FFI hourly rate for 2012/13 of £124.

HSE will review how FFI is working after the first twelve months of operation, and within three years of the regime coming into effect.

Guidance and information are available on the HSE website.