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What is a Certificate of Lawfulness?
There are certain types of development which homeowners can complete lawfully without the need for planning permission. In simple terms, a Certificate of Lawfulness is formal confirmation that planning permission is not required for these types of development. It can cover both proposed works and existing works. Small extensions, loft conversions and changes of use do not always require planning permission so can be covered by a Certificate of Lawfulness.
There are two types of Certificates of Lawfulness:
· Certificate of Lawfulness (Proposed)
· Certificate of Lawfulness (Existing)
As a homeowner, you will want to know if the type of work you want to carry out (or work already done) requires planning permission or can be covered by a Certificate of Lawfulness.
A Certificate of Lawfulness (Proposed) is a formal and legal document confirming that your intended building alterations do not require planning permission and are lawful. An example of this is for a change of use, if you decided to use a room in a dwelling house (not a flat or maisonette) as an office.
A Certificate of Lawfulness (Existing) is a formal and legal document confirming that existing building alterations did not require planning permission and were lawful. It can be applied for when work has already happened and planning permission wasn’t applied for. For example, if an extension has been built but did not receive planning permission, the Certificate of Lawfulness (Existing) confirms that it did not require any because it was within the tolerances of permitted development.
When it comes to planning permission and Certificates of Lawfulness it is essential to be sure of your legal position. It is therefore important to obtain expert legal advice, especially as every case is unique. KS Law are experienced in a wide variety of immunity and certification cases. If you would like advice on obtaining a Certificate of Lawful Use, please call us on 01634 811 118 or complete our online enquiry form.