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Approved codes of practice

The HSE Act allows for the development and approval of statements of preferred work practice, known as "approved codes of practice".

These are recommended means of compliance with the requirements of the Act, and have been developed after consultation with the industry or industries concerned. They are approved by the Minister of Labour after consultation with affected groups and individuals.

A code of practice applies to anyone who has a duty of care in the circumstances described in the code - which may include employers, employees, the self-employed, principals to contracts, owners of buildings or plant, and so on.

An approved code does not necessarily contain the only acceptable ways of achieving the standard required by the Act. But, in most cases, compliance will meet the requirements of the Act, in relation to the subject matter of the code.

An approved code does not have the same legal force as a regulation, and failure to comply with a code of practice is not, of itself, an offence. However, observance of a relevant code of practice may be considered as evidence of good practice in a court.

Link to list of approved codes of practice.