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Summary of maximum penalties under s.33 HSWA 1974 for offences committed before 16th January 2009

Section and Contravention Magistrates' court Crown Court
S.33(1)(a) - S2 - S6 £20,000 UNLIMITED FINE
S.33(1)(a) - S7 £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(b) - S8 & 9 £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(c) - any H & S regulations £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(d) - relating to S14 enquiries £5,000 (Level 5) *
(e) - any requirement imposed by Inspector under S20 & S25 £5,000 (Level 5 in respect of requirements s.20 only) UNLIMITED FINE (NB only offences breaches of s.25 triable on Indictment)
(f) - attempting to / preventing a person speaking to Inspector £5,000 *
(g) - contravention of a PN or IN £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment 2 years imprisonment and/or unlimited fine.
(h) - obstruction £5,000 (Level 5) *
(i) - relating to S27 £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(j) - disclosure in contravention to S28 and S27(4) £5,000 2 years imprisonment and/or unlimited fine
(k) - false statement £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(l) - false entry in register £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(m) - use a document with intent to deceive £5,000 UNLIMITED FINE
(n) - impersonating an inspector £5,000 (Level 5) *
(o) - relating to S42 orders £20,000 or 6 months imprisonment 2 years imprisonment and/or unlimited fine
s.33(4)(a) - not having licence where required £5,000 2 years imprisonment and/or unlimited fine
(b) - breach of licence conditions £5,000 2 years imprisonment and/or unlimited fine
(c) - relating to explosives £5,000 2 years imprisonment and/or unlimited fine

* Magistrates' Courts only

Summary of maximum penalties for offences under s.33 HSWA committed between 16th January 20091 and 12th March 2015

Section and Contravention  Magistrates’ court  Crown Court
S.33(1)(a) - S2 – S6 £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment*  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
S.33(1)(a) – S7 £5,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(b) – S8 £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(b) – S9 £20,000 Unlimited fine
(c) – any H & S regulations £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(d) – relating to S14 enquiries £5,000 (Level 5) Summary only
(e) – any requirement imposed by Inspector under S20 & S25 £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(f) – attempting to / preventing a person speaking to Inspector £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(g) – contravention of a PN or IN £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(h) - obstruction £5,000 (Level 5) and/or 6 months imprisonment ** Summary only
(i) – relating to S27 £5,000 Unlimited fine
(j) – disclosure in contravention to S28 and S27(4) £5,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(k) – false statement £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(l) – false entry in register £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(m) – use a document with intent to deceive £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment
(n) – impersonating an inspector £5,000 (Level 5) Summary only
(o) – relating to S42 orders £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment  
Any other offence under existing statutory provisions £20,000 and/or 6 months imprisonment * Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 

1. As amended by the Health and Safety (Offences) Act 2008.

Summary of maximum penalties for offences under s.33 HSWA committed on or after 12th March 2015

Section and Contravention   Magistrates’ court   Crown Court 
S.33(1)(a) - S2 – S6  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment*   Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
S.33(1)(a) – S7  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(b) – S8  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(b) – S9  Unlimited fine Unlimited fine 
(c) – any H & S regulations  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(d) – relating to S14 enquiries  Unlimited fine Summary only 
(e) – any requirement imposed by Inspector under S20 & S25  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(f) – attempting to / preventing a person speaking to Inspector  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(g) – contravention of a PN or IN  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(h) - obstruction  Unlimited fine) and/or 6 months imprisonment **  Summary only 
(i) – relating to S27  Unlimited fine Unlimited fine 
(j) – disclosure in contravention to S28 and S27(4)  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(k) – false statement  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(l) – false entry in register  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(m) – use a document with intent to deceive  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment 
(n) – impersonating an inspector  Unlimited fine Summary only 
(o) – relating to S42 orders  Unlimited fine and/or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment   
Any other offence under existing statutory provisions Unlimited fine and/ or 6 months imprisonment *  Unlimited fine and/or 2 years imprisonment  

* The maximum term of imprisonment that may be imposed by a magistrates’ court is currently 6 months. When s154(1) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 is brought into force the maximum term will be increased to 12 months.

** The maximum term of imprisonment that may be imposed by a magistrates’ court is currently 6 months. When s281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 is brought into force the maximum term will be increased to 51 weeks in England and Wales or 12 months in Scotland.

Updated 2015-07-16