James Smith (CB25585)

The Board has chosen to publish the details of this hearing due to the LBP carrying out or supervising building work in a negligent manner, and in a manner that was contrary to a building consent. He also brought the licensing regime into disrepute when he failed to appear at a hearing as a witness when he was lawfully summonsed.

Mr Smith carried out, supervised or inspected blockwork for a new house foundation which was not completed to a tradesperson-like standard and was not as per the building consent. He also failed to provide a record of work on completion afterwards, and his approach to the investigation was less than helpful.

He was also found to have conducted himself in a manner which could bring the LBP Scheme into disrepute where he failed to appear before the Board when summonsed to do so as a witness at an earlier, unrelated hearing. LBPs are expected to cooperate with investigations, but Mr Smith’s failure to attend, or to subsequently provide an explanation or reason as to why he didn’t, was found to be contemptuous.

The respondent is fined $2000 in respect of the negligence, building contrary to a building consent, and failure to provide a record of work. The Board has imposed a censure in respect of the disrepute finding, which is a public expression of disproval. Mr Smith has also been ordered to pay $1000 towards the cost of the hearing.

In addition to publishing the respondent’s name, the Registrar will also record this action on the Register of Licensed building Practitioners, where it will stay for a period of three years.

What can we learn from this decision?

Building work must be carried out to industry standard, to a good level of workmanship, and it must be carried out as per the Building Consent if there is one. Anyone carrying out supervision of restricted building work must make sure that the work has been carried out completely and competently.

It is also very important that records of work are given to both the client and the building consent authority as soon as possible after any restricted building work is completed, rather than waiting until the whole project is finished.

And, lastly, the LBP scheme is a professional organisation, and all of our dealings with the public, our clients, and the Board should reflect that professionalism.

Supervision of RBW is defined in more detail in the Practice Note

Workmanship and tolerances [PDF, 710 KB](external link) is covered in the Building Performance Guidance

Note: Photos showing some of the sub-standard workmanship and more detailed explanations can be found on the LBP website.