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Lawful development certificate for a proposed use or operation

Last Modified December 11, 2014

An application for a Lawful Development Certificate should be used to establish whether a proposed use of buildings or other land, or some operations proposed to be carried out in, on, over, or under land, would be lawful.

A Lawful Development Certificate is a legal document stating lawfulness of past, present or future development. The certificate is not planning permission.

A certificate for a proposed operation or activity will specify (by reference to a plan or drawing) the area of land included in the certificate and describe the precise nature of use, operation or activity which is lawful. The certificate will give the reason for determining the use or operation to be lawful and specify the date of the application for the certificate.

Apply online at the Planning Portal or download a form:



Information required to be submitted for a lawful development certificate:

  • National requirements (Part 1)
  • Local requirements (Part 2) - we are working on a Local List, please submit your application in accordance with national requirements

To process an application we require the information detailed in Part 1 above to be submitted with the application. The period for deciding the application cannot start until all the information has been received.

Please make sure you submit one original plus one copy of the application form, together with one original plus one copy of the plans and supporting information. The fee information and help notes are provided to assist you.


It is an offence to provide false or misleading information or to withhold information with intent to deceive. We can revoke, at any time, a certificate issued as a result of false or misleading information.


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