Question: Council has not approved my Development Application – do I have any legal remedies?

If your Development Application (DA) has been refused by Council the first remedial action would involve a request for an internal review of the decision. This affords the Council an opportunity to reconsider the DA. The application would then be reviewed by a different officer within the Council for the purpose of determining whether the original decision is to be affirmed or overturned.

Once the reasons for the Council are known as to why a DA has been denied, it would be prudent to consider modification, addition or deletion to the DA, as necessary, to ensure compliance and then re-lodgement of the DA with the Council. Such amendments could go to rectification of errors, descriptions or miscalculations.

If the denial of the application is maintained, then an appeal can be prosecuted through the Land and Environment Court. Please note that an appeal must be made within six months from the initial refusal.

In matters of this kind time is of the essence. There are strict time limits that must be adhered to. Accordingly, it is imperative that if you are to challenge the rejection of the DA, legal advice be sought as soon as possible.

Generally, it is our advice that before proceeding with the prosecution of any litigation in the Land and Environment Court every effort be made to secure the approval of Counsel. Accordingly:

  1. Examine the DA relative to the feedback received from the Council and in particular, the reasons for the denial of the application. Take advice from experts such as your architect or any consultants for the purpose of undertaking modification, addition or deletion to the DA as necessary to ensure compliance.
  2. Consider the amendments to the plans and proposals, being the subject of the DA, which will assist in the prosecution of any internal appeal process within Council to resolve the issues.

You should be aware that there may be significantly less opportunity available to modify a DA once an appeal has been lodged with the Land and Environment Court. This would also ordinarily give rise to much higher legal costs compared to the costs that may be incurred in the modification of the DA and re-lodgement of same.

For any legal advice or representation pertaining to the rejection of Development Applications, compliance with Council requirements or the prosecution of appeals through the Land and Environment Court, call Brydens Lawyers today. We do provide expert legal advice and presentation in relation to all Local Council and Planning and Environment matters.