Building safety: update on the deadline for registering Higher Risk Buildings in England

5 minute read
11 August 2023

As we reported in a recent article, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) announced earlier this year that, under the Building Safety Act 2022, Principal Accountable Persons (PAPs) of Higher Risk Buildings (HRBs) will have six months, from April to 30 September 2023, to register their buildings with the Building Safety Regulator (BSR). 

Update from the HSE: requirements for meeting the registration deadline

We have now received an update from the HSE which confirms that HRBs will only be considered successfully registered once the application has been approved by the BSR. It is understood that for a successful registration, applicants need to have submitted and paid for their application and have received an email from the BSR to confirm that the application has been approved.

When should I make my application for registration?

Given this clarification on the registration process, sufficient time needs to be allowed for the BSR to approve applications for registration. The HSE has provided no formal timescales for confirming successful applications. Still, we understand that the HSE's current estimate is that the process should take at most 15 working days.

PAPs are therefore encouraged to submit applications to register their HRBs sooner rather than later.

Penalty for non-registration

It is understood from current information that it will become a criminal offence from 1 October 2023 to allow an unregistered HRBs to be occupied. Whilst there may be a defence available under s77(2) of the Building Safety Act 2022, if there is a 'reasonable excuse' for the non-registration, it is not certain whether the submission of an application which has not yet been approved would be considered a reasonable excuse.

Submitting Key Building Information

As part of the registration process for HRBs in England, there is also a requirement to supply Key Building Information (KBI) to the BSR. KBI is a set of information needed about each HRB in order to assess and properly manage the risks of fire spread or structural failure. It is now understood from recent guidance from the HSE that all KBI submissions must also be completed via the application portal before 1 October 2023. 

Please refer to our article from earlier this year, for further guidance on what constitutes KBI for HRBs. It should be noted that PAPs are also required to update the BSR whenever the KBI changes, within 28 days of the PAP becoming aware of the change.


Given that it is now less than two months until the deadline for registration, PAPs will need to ensure that any outstanding applications and KBI are submitted as soon as possible.

Applications to register HRBs can be made via an online portal. For further government guidance on providing KBI as part of the application process, please see the guidance from the BSR.

If you have any questions about this article, please contact Sue Ryan, Gemma Whittaker, Sean Garbutt or Megan D'Souza-Mathew.

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