The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are consulting on revising the process for considering disputes under Fee for Intervention (FFI).

Since the introduction of FFI, there have been criticisms of the dispute process, notably that it was not independent of the HSE. Even Mr Martin Temple, Chair of HSE, raised concerns about the process for dealing with disputes in his 2014 Triennial Review Report on HSE.

The scheme and its appeal process were also to be questioned this summer, with a judicial review being brought by facilities management firm in an attempt to have its Fees for Intervention bill overturned and the current system for deciding appeals quashed.

Speaking about the scheme earlier in the year, as well as the upcoming judicial review, Kevin Bridges, partner at law firm Pinsent Masons, said: “A lot of people in the industry are keenly watching this court case, there's no suggestion the scheme will be scrapped but the result could have a big impact for companies and construction.”

It seems that some of these complaints and worries are now being addressed by the Consultation on revising the process for considering disputes under Fee for Intervention (FFI).

The new disputes process is hoped to be fully independent, and the consultation is looking for views on the details of the process, in particular:

  • the information which¬†HSE will provide;
  • how representation can be made;
  • how disputes will be considered;
  • suspension of the dispute process where an investigation or appeal against an enforcement notice is ongoing.

It is thought the revised, fully independent dispute process is to be set up no later than 1 September 2017.

The Consultation ends on 2 June 2017.

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