Go to navigation

Proposed development: Application for a Lawful Development Certificate

To find out whether or not proposed development, including new works or changes of use of land, would be lawful if carried out, apply to the council for a Lawful Development Certificate (LDC) by completing the appropriate form and returning it with the necessary supporting documentation and prescribed fee.

The application should include a precise description of the proposal and provide plans, drawings or written documentation in support of it. If there is insufficient information, a certificate will not be issued.

For more information about LDC applications there is a user guide provided by the Department of Communities and Local Government. Uncertain about legality?

If in doubt as to whether or not existing buildings, operations, activities or uses of land are lawful, apply to the council for a LDC by completing the appropriate form.

Notes to assist with completing the forms

  • You will need to submit a validation checklist and the information required by the checklist with your application form
  • Describe precisely the location of the land to which the application relates and attach two copies of an Ordnance Survey-based plan showing the boundary of the land in red
  • Does the proposal consist of, or include, carrying out building or other operations? Attach such plans and drawings as are necessary to show their precise nature
  • In the case of a proposed building, the plans should indicate its precise siting and exact dimensions. This also applies to proposals to alter or create new access; layout any new street; construct any associated hard standings; means of enclosure or draining of the land or buildings
  • Is the proposal for the change of use of land or buildings? Fully describe the scale and nature of the proposed use, including the processes to be carried on; any machinery to be installed and the hours the proposed use will be carried out.

Use Classes are defined in the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987.


The amended Section 194 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990  made it an offence to provide false or misleading information or to withhold material information with intent to deceive. Section 193(7) enables the council to revoke, at any time, a certificate it may have issued as a result of false or misleading information.


Any proposed development should not be started until an application has been determined. If work is started the developer could face enforcement action.