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Planning and environment

Use class – successive changes of use

Can a succession of different unauthorised uses, within the same use class, be added together – so the ten-year enforcement period in relation to the original unauthorised use has expired?

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High Court – appeals

A summary of the main time limits for appeals in planning cases.

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Planning – costs

An award of costs in a planning dispute is not as unusual as it once was. But, it can often take a long time to actually recover those costs. 

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Enforcement – ten-year period

A change of use will normally require planning permission (unless it is within a particular class of the Use Classes Order 1987).

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Planning – breach

Localism Act 2011 contains several important changes to the rules on planning breaches, and enforcement. 

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Drains – SuDS

SuDS is the abbreviation for ‘sustainable drainage systems'. 

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Section 106 - seller's liability?

In most instances, a landowner who sells land for development will not be liable for the planning obligations in an s106 agreement. This is because his obligations will usually only take effect once planning permission has been implemented, and that will usually be after the land has sold, and so the seller can usually rely on a release in the s106 agreement.

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Contaminated Land - new Guidance

New Statutory Guidance sets out revised guidelines on how LAs should implement the contaminated land regime (under EPA 1990), including how they should go about deciding whether land is 'contaminated'.

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EIR – FOIA

Freedom of information requests are dealt with under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. But, requests for environmental information are dealt with under Environmental Information Regs 2004 (a different regime with its own distinctive rules).

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Judicial review – FOI

The judicial review procedure does not allow for automatic disclosure of documents (unlike other forms of civil litigation). Accordingly, the use of freedom of information requests can be a valuable way of getting information for a prospective claimant. 

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