Q. What can I do if my planning application has been refused?
A. If you have applied for planning permission and been refused, you can appeal the refusal. For most applications you have 6 months from the date of refusal to lodge the appeal (although for Householder applications (those involving proposals to alter or enlarge a single house), the time limit is only 12 weeks, so great care is needed on this question). It is possible to appeal against the failure of a Council to determine an application within the 8 or 13 week period which is stated on the validation letter, or any extended period agreed on with the Council (and such appeals have to be lodged within 6 months of that period ending).
The appeal is lodged with the Planning Inspectorate, an independent Government body, who appoint an Inspector to decide the appeal. All appeals start with the preparation of a written statement setting out why the appeal should be allowed. The statement will focus on the development plan policies and any considerations which are felt to justify the application. It is the first document an inspector deciding an appeal will read, and so drafting it is very important. Depending on the issues, other documents may be required.
The appeal can take various forms; most are dealt with in written form, but for larger and more complex cases, the appeal will be decided either at a Hearing (a round table discussion between the appellant and the Council in front of the Inspector), or an Inquiry (a more formal, court-like process involving witnesses giving evidence and cross examination of the witnesses by advocates).
For further advice on planning applications, contact Suzanne on 01952 208426 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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