August 7, 2023

What Is The Fine For Not Having A Gas Safety Certificate?

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Property owners have certain legal obligations, especially when renting the property out. One of these obligations is getting a gas safety certificate. The gas safety certificate, or Landlord Gas Safety Record, proves that a registered gas safety engineer has inspected the property. It is a certification that the property is fit for occupation as far as the gas installations are concerned.

That’s why this certificate is of prime importance. The aim is to ensure the safety of the occupants, whether it is a home or commercial building.

What Is Gas Safety Certificate?

A gas safety certificate records an annual inspection of gas fittings, appliances, boilers, and fuels installed in a home or commercial building. Per UK laws, gas safety certificate is of three types.

  1. Residential gas safety certificate, also known as the Homeowners’ gas safety certificate.
  2. Commercial gas safety certificates for properties meant for commercial or business activities.
  3. New build gas safety certificate, specifically meant for the newly constructed buildings.

Here are some important facts about the gas safety certificates you must know if you own a residential or commercial property.

  • This certificate can only be issued by a qualified gas safety engineer registered with the “Gas Safe Register.” You can find a gas safety engineer near your area by visiting the official website of the gas safe register.
  • The engineer will examine each gas fittings and appliance installed in your building, including boilers, flues, gas fires, and gas cookers. He will identify the defects which you need to get fixed immediately. Once done, the engineer will give you the certificate.
  • The gas safety certificate is valid for one year. It needs to be renewed well before the expiry date.

What Is The Relevant Law?

The basic law governing the use of gas in the UK is known as “Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998”. The law came into force on 3rd October 1998. This law binds the landlords to ensure the safety of gas appliances, pipelines, and flues.

In April 2018, the law was amended under the “Gas Safety Regulations (Installation and Use) – (Amendment) 2018 (The Regulations)”. Before this amendment, the expiry date of the gas safety certificate was considered from the date of issuance.

Per this amendment, now the validity of this certificate will remain constant, according to the previous certificate. It means if the expiry date of the current certificate was 31st December 2021 and you got it renewed in November 2021, the new certificate will remain valid up to 31st December 2022. Before this amendment, the expiry would have been November 2022.

What Happens If You Don’t Have A Gas Safety Certificate?

Since it is a legal requirement, the consequences of not having a valid gas safety certificate might be quite serious for you. The cost of a gas safety certificate is very low. So, getting one is better than facing something that might be more costly or serious.

Let’s explore what you might face in case you don’t have a gas safety certificate.

  • You will have to face legal proceedings.
  • You will be fined for not complying with the relevant laws.
  • You could face detention for up to six months.
  • If there’s any casualty due to any gas-related mishap in your property, you could face manslaughter charges leveled against you. Its consequences might be quite serious.
  • The insurance policy of your property will be considered invalid.
  • The legal consequences could be even more serious if the gas safety certificate detects any tempering or modification.

What Is The Fine For Not Having A Gas Safety Certificate?

As per the gas safety regulations, a landlord is penalized if he fails to produce the gas safety certificate. This penalty can vary based on the quantum of violation of the rules. However, the maximum fine that you could face is £6000.

The most serious part of this fine is that it is not the only punishment for not having a gas safety certificate. You could be sent to jail in addition to the compulsory fine of up to £6000. There are many recent instances on record where the landlords received punishment in the shape of a huge fine and suspended imprisonment of up to 26 weeks.

Conclusion

Being a landlord in the UK imposes certain responsibilities on you. The most important is the safety of your tenants against the potential risk of electricity and gas hazards. Normally, the use of gas in a building should be quite safe, but authorities have formulated various laws to ensure that it remains safe for the occupants.

The gas safety certificate is one of the basic requirements of the relevant laws. It is mandatory for you as a landlord, to get this certificate on an annual basis. It will cost a little but can save you from huge penalties and possible sentences.

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