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Professional Indemnity Implications of the Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020


The Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020 (“DBP Act”) passed through NSW Parliament on 3 June 2020 and is intended to apply to all parties in NSW involved in the construction of residential or mixed-use developments. Specifically, it includes “any person or entity that undertakes building or design work, supplies or manufactures building products or supervises building work"1.

In the second reading speech to the Design and Building Practitioners Bill in the NSW Legislative Assembly Kevin Andres MLA, Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation, noted that:

“Modern buildings are no longer four walls and a roof. Construction is complex, integrated and evolving. Future occupants of buildings deserve to know they are buying a quality design and expert construction that is protected by strong and modernised building laws. They also deserve to have an avenue of recourse available in the event of a defect during a building’s life. This bill is a priority for our Government. It is critical to support the building and construction sector, and provide New South Wales with a built environment where safety and quality is prioritised and where there is strong consumer confidence.”

The DBP Act represents the first tranche of reforms the NSW Government expects to make as part of the biggest overhaul of the New South Wales building sector2

The DBP Act does three things:

  1. It requires mandatory declarations by certain persons involved in construction;
  2. It provides for mandatory insurance requirements for certain persons involved in construction; and
  3. It establishes a new statutory duty of care for persons who carry out construction to avoid economic loss caused by defects.

In our latest whitepaper, we analyse the newly passed DBP Act to explore the Professional Indemnity Implications, by diving deep into the mandatory declarations required by registered design practitioners, principal design practitioners and building practitioners. We also outline mandatory insurance as outlined in the Act and provide guidance around new statutory duty of care.

For these insights and more, download our whitepaper now.



1 Moore, A. & Finnigan, R., A new duty of care changes the liability landscape – the impact of the Design and Building Practitioners Bill 2020, Wotton + Kearney Legal Insights – Construction 9 June 2020
2 Kevin Andrews MLA Second Reading Speech to the Design and Building Practitioners Bill 2019, in the Legislative Assembly

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