It is now illegal to use any form of asbestos in the construction or refurbishment of any buildings. However, asbestos was commonly used in construction in the past, and much of what was used is still in place.
If you are responsible for any non-residential premises, legally you have a duty to manage the risk from asbestos and must have a plan in place to deal with any asbestos.
This means landlords or those responsible for maintenance and repair of non-domestic premises (e.g. industrial, commercial or public buildings such as factories, warehouses, offices, shops, hospitals and schools). Non-domestic premises also include those 'common' areas of certain domestic premises, such as purpose-built flats or houses converted into flats. The common areas of these premises include foyers, corridors, lifts and lift-shafts, staircases, roof spaces, gardens, yards, outhouses and garages.
It is a criminal offence not to have such a register and could result in hefty fines.
The law requires the dutyholder to:
If you are a landlord or have clear responsibility for the maintenance or repair of non-domestic premises, for example through an explicit agreement such as a tenancy agreement or contract, then it is vital you take asbestos seriously and have a plan in place.