Regularisation is the term given to a type of application, which allows for the retrospective approval of unauthorised building work; that is, work previously undertaken without an approval of or notification to ourselves.
It is not an alternative to the legal requirement of applying for building regulation approval before work is carried out. However it can be used to regularise any work constructed without approval on or after 11 November 1985.
The application is different to that which we normally deal with in that instead of work being built to a complying plan and supervised during construction, the applicant is asking us to involve itself in determining whether unauthorised work, usually completed many years before, has been carried out to a satisfactory standard sufficient for the authority to issue a Certificate of Compliance.
It will not be possible to issue a Regularisation Certificate unless the works comply with the regulations (applicable at the time of construction) or where necessary you are prepared to remedy any non-conformity.
If you are not familiar with building regulations you are strongly advised to engage an architect or surveyor to help you through the process as it is for you to evidence that the work complies with the regulations or will comply after carrying out additional work.
The process begins with the submission of the application which should be accompanied by:
- as much information as you can supply in support of your application which should include an as built set of plans of the unauthorised work, and
- a plan showing any additional work to be carried out, to ensure that the unauthorised work will comply with the building regulations that were applicable at the time it was built
Our assessment, inspection or testing
The information supplied is then assessed by us, the more complete the information supplied the more straightforward the process should be.
We may need to visit the site and if necessary request that the unauthorised work be opened up for inspection, or testing or sampling of materials as we think appropriate to ascertain what work, if any, is required to make sure that the relevant requirements are met.
When you have taken any such steps as required we will then be able to notify you:
- of the work that should be carried out in order to demonstrate compliance; or
- that no work is necessary in order to demonstrate compliance
When you have carried out the work detailed above or if no works were required and we are satisfied that the work complies, we will issue a Regularisation Certificate.
If you should choose not to carry out further work then we will not be able to certify the work.
It is difficult for us to place an overall time limit on the whole procedure as this depends on the information provided but regularisation should not be regarded as a fast track method of obtaining building regulation compliance.
However we are aware that applicants using this procedure are often rushing to complete house sales/purchase etc, and we will of course do all we can to deal promptly with such matters.
Our powers & rights
If less than 2 years have elapsed since completion of the unauthorised work we may use the powers detailed in Section 36 (1) of the Building Act 1984 to have work pulled down, removed or altered in such a way as to make it demonstrate compliance.
Irrespective of the above we have the right to apply for an injunction to have the unauthorised work removed or altered where it considers its contravention presents a danger.