When does ignoring planning refusal become lawful?

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    When does ignoring planning refusal become lawful?

    Hi all,

    The question is in the title... there‘s a property which had asked for planning consent to replace its windows, this was refused, it went to appeal, the appeal was dismissed by the Inspector. Subsequently the windows were replaced regardless.

    I understand there‘s a four year period and a ten year period before unauthorised works become lawful but I am not quite sure which one would apply?

    The 4 year period seems to apply generally on developments in breach of planning controls (should be applicable here) and the 10 year period apparently applies to cases where planning conditions haven‘t been adhered to (in this case here there are no planning conditions to begin with)? So I‘m not sure which period would apply here...?

    Many thanks for any pointers!

    #2
    what is the context of your question? Is this your property? Or a property you are purchasing? Or other?

    Comment


      #3
      Since no planning permission was given for the operational development, which is what the change of windows would be defined as, no enforcement action can be taken after 4 years of the development being completed.

      Then the development would be lawful, because no enforcement action was started in due time.

      Comment


        #4
        As above, unless it's a listed building, then I think it becomes a criminal offence.

        Comment


          #5
          With the hordes of NIMBY neighbours on every corner, it was a brave man who did that!.
          If it goes past 4 years with no enforcement action and one wanted to regularise the situation, an Application for a Certificate of Lawful Entitlement would be needed. That would require you to prove that the property was occupied for 4 years continuously. This is a legal process not a Planning one.

          Comment


            #6
            That would require you to prove that the property was occupied for 4 years continuously.
            All that needs to be proven for planning purposes is when the windows were installed. That has nothing to do with occupation of the house.

            A separate matter would be whether building control approval was required and not applied for.
            With windows sometimes the installer of a new window will proved a FENSA certificate, which will have a date shown on it.
            Your FENSA certificate provides proof that your window and door installations:
            • Comply with Building Regulations
            • Use energy efficient products
            • Are registered with the local council
            If that did happen then that is conclusive evidence of when the operational development was completed and clear evidence that enforcement action cannot be taken by the local planning authority.

            Under those circumstances an application for a Lawful Development Certificate would be pointless, because the evidence to support such an application would be the same FENSA document with a fee of £206 required.

            Comment


              #7
              What happens if the Lawful Development Certificate is applied for and refused but no enforcement action is taken? Can the Council take enforcement action related to the Lawful Development Certificate years' later or would they still need to take enforcement action based on the original planning application?

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by vmart View Post
                What happens if the Lawful Development Certificate is applied for and refused but no enforcement action is taken? Can the Council take enforcement action related to the Lawful Development Certificate years' later or would they still need to take enforcement action based on the original planning application?
                I'm not sure the refused planning application has anything to do with it (legally), you asked, they said no - end of.

                The fact that it was done is not a breach of a planning condition is was unpermitted development which as stated by other users the council have 4 years normally (I don't think there is a time limit on listed buildings) so assuming it's beyond that I shouldn't worry. As/when you come to sell your solicitor can buy a indemnity policy for a few pounds if the buyer is unduly concerned.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Thank you Dan_Manchester.

                  Comment

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