Fly-tipping: Duty of Care
As a householder, you have a duty to take all reasonable measures to ensure that any household waste produced on your property is only transferred to an authorised person. An authorised person includes the local authority that provides your normal waste collection service.
If you have household waste which cannot be disposed of through your normal local authority waste collection service (or within the curtilage of your premises) you can:
- see if your local authority's household waste and recycling centre accepts the waste and take it yourself - this service is usually free of charge
- check if your local authority offers special collection services - you may be charged
- use a commercial waste collection service - you will be charged
If you use a commercial waste collection service, you should check whether the business is an authorised carrier or exempt from registering as a waste carrier.
You can check whether a waste carrier is registered on the Environment Agency's public register or call 03708 506 506.
As a householder, you are required to take reasonable steps to check that people removing waste from your premises are authorised to do so. Reasonable steps to take:
- ask the waste carrier to provide you with their full address and telephone number.
- ask to see their waste carrier licence issued by the Environment Agency.
- contact the Environment Agency directly on 03708 506 506 and ask for a free instant Waste Carrier Validation Check, alternatively you can check registered waste carriers on the Environment Agency website
- visit the Environment Agency website.
If you are arranging for a tradesman (eg builder, landscape gardener, carpet fitter) to carry out work on your property, you have a responsibility for the waste produced as a result of the work. You should check:
- that the tradesman will dispose of the waste generated
- that they have appropriate authorisation to dispose of the waste eg that they are registered to transport the waste
If the person who takes the waste from you is not authorised to do so, or your waste is illegally disposed of (for example, fly-tipped), you could be prosecuted and fined if you have not taken all reasonable measures to meet your duty of care obligations.