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If the subsurface disposal system fails an inspection, the owner normally has up to two years in which to correct the problem. However, the Board of Health may require that the owner address the problem within a shorter period should the failing system present a threat to the public health and the environment. If the property is sold, the new owner assumes responsibility for the failed septic system. The new owner may make an agreement with the town to connect to the municipal sewer system after taking ownership.
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According to Title 5 regulations, all subsurface disposal systems must be inspected by a state-licensed inspector under the following conditions:
A Title 5 Inspection report is good for 2 years. If accompanied by pumping records showing the system has been pumped at least once a year since the last inspection, a title 5 inspection is valid for 3 years.
If you have any questions about the need for an inspection, please contact the Health Department at 508-261-7366.
Yes. Title 5 requires that owners of septic systems meet the standard of “maximum feasible compliance” with the requirements of the State Code. The level of compliance that may be met–that is, whether the system is simply repaired, replaced, or the home connected to the sewer–will depend on the characteristics of the property involved and the availability of the sewer.
If the sewer is not available near the home, the homeowner must apply to the Board of Health for a variance and provide for approval by the Board of Health a design for a new system that meets the requirements of Title Five. Alternative systems to those specified in the state code must also be approved by the Board of Health.
No. Individual homeowners must hire their own licensed inspector. A list of state licensed Title 5 inspectors can be found at the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission website.