What happens if I can’t finish a job, how can I certify that work?

Despite the best of intentions there are occasions when, for various significant reasons, an electrical worker is unable to complete work which is in progress. This could include situations where the relationship between an electrical worker and client irretrievably breaks down, exclusion from site, or other circumstances that result in the electrical worker being unable to finish their work.

Situations like this can be difficult to manage because this partially completed electrical work can pose safety risks and uncertainty for both parties. It raises questions with regards to who carries responsibility for uncompleted work and for certification. These situations can result in complaints to the Board against the electrical worker.

Managing the risk

With good safe work practices, record keeping / certification these factors can be mitigated or eliminated and place the electrical worker in a stronger defendable position should the client decide to lodge a complaint.

Safe working practices

All work in progress must be electrically safe at all times, this means while it is being carried out, at the end of the working day, or if, for any reason, it is temporarily, or permanently left uncompleted.

Record keeping and certification

In situations such as this it is important to understand a certificate of compliance (CoC) should be issued for all work that has been carried out (but not completed), stating which work (if any) is safe to connect. It may be the case that there is partially completed work that is not safe to connect and it strongly recommended in these cases a CoC is issued which notes that it is not complete and is not safe to connect. You can also issue other written warnings and affix notices giving those warnings.

Maintaining regular detailed records of work in progress (diary notes, job sheets etc.) will place the electrical worker in a far better position to effectively certify the work, even more so if they are unable to return to site and are given little or no notice of this. The CoC should be given to the appropriate person within 20 working days of completion of the work. Completion may also mean, for example, the point in time when the electrical worker was permanently excluded or lost control of the site. Importantly the CoC cannot be withheld for any commercial reasons.

Further information on this topic is available from the EWRB Tool Box question available from this link.

What happens if I can’t finish a job, how I can certify that work?

Information on a related topic is available from this link

What should I do if the homeowner is unwilling to pay for completed work?