Why are the HSE charging me for a visit?

Fee for Intervention (FFI) is HSE’s cost recovery regime implemented from 1 October 2012, under regulations 23 to 25 of The Health and Safety (Fees) Regulations 2012 link to external website. These Regulations put a duty on HSE to recover its costs for carrying out its regulatory functions from those found to be in material breach of health and safety law.

How does it work?

HSE’s inspectors inspect work activities and investigate incidents and complaints. If, when visiting a business, they see material breaches of the law, the business or organisation will have to pay a fee. The fee is based on the amount of time that the inspector has had to spend identifying the material breach, helping businesses to put it right, investigating and taking enforcement action.

What is a material breach?

A material breach is when, in the opinion of the HSE inspector, there is or has been a contravention of health and safety law that requires them to issue notice in writing of that opinion to the dutyholder. Written notification from an HSE inspector may be by a notification of contravention, an improvement or prohibition notice, or a prosecution and must include the following information:

  • the law that the inspector’s opinion relates to;
  • the reasons for their opinion; and
  • notification that a fee is payable to HSE.

How much will it cost?

From 1 October 2012, the fee payable by dutyholders found to be in material breach of the law is £129 per hour. The total amount to be recovered will be based on the amount of time it takes HSE to identify and conclude its regulatory action, in relation to the material breach (including associated office work), multiplied by the relevant hourly rate.

The latest figures show that as of August 2015, the HSE sent 2922 invoices for a total of £2.01 million, an average of £715 each.