Building Certifiers in Queensland are required under the Building Act 1975 to have a certain level of coverage via Professional Indemnity Insurance. This allow a Certifier to be endorsed by the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) to act as a Private Building Certifier, issuing approval for building works. Without PI Insurance, a Private Building Certifier can not issue Development approvals for Building Work. Effectively, building work has the potential to slow and stop as Certifiers are restricted from trading.
THE CATALYST FOR THE SITUATION
On 14 June 2017, the Grenfell Tower fire in London, which sadly took the lives of 72 people and injured 70 others, brought into focus the non-conforming and non-compliant combustible materials, systems and products being used in the building industry. Australian events, such as the Lacrosse and Neo fires in Melbourne and the structural failure of the Opal Tower in Sydney Olympic Park, have re-enforced concerns that the potential impact of non-conforming building products (NCBP) was not isolated to overseas markets. These events within the Australian building industry have exposed the insurance market servicing the Private Certification industry, with concerns about the long-term risk of current and potential claims.
The insurance industry has responded to these concerns by:
Limiting their risk and potential association with non-conforming building products and building failure claims into the future.
No longer covering the Private Certification Industry. There are now only two insurers who will cover Certifiers. With the insurance industry limiting or avoiding risk, this has effectively created an unprecedented and extraordinary increase of all remaining insurance premiums. Many certification businesses may not be able to source Public Indemnity insurance and will be forced to close their doors.
WE HAVE GOOD NEWS ABOUT OUR FUTURE
You can be assured that Cornerstone will continue operating as an Endorsed Private Certifier. Cornerstone has been proactively working with an insurance
broker and the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC).Cornerstone and has formally obtained Public Liability Insurance compliant with requirements under the Building Regulation 2006, Section 52, allowing us to retain our QBCC Endorsement.
Cornerstone can safeguard your future certification needs as we remain endorsed, thereby protecting your current applications from disruption. We are also preparing for our trading capability past our next 18-month insurance term by reviewing and adjusting pricing to reflect the true costs of certification after this public indemnity crisis.
We will be staying in business.