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Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) – 10 Things to Remember

Simon Dimmick

Simon Dimmick, Partner in our Planning & Environmental law team, explains 10 important points to remember when it comes to Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL).

  1. Submit the additional information form with any planning application – our experience is some Local Planning Authorities will not validate the application without it!
  2. Apply for any exemptions/reliefs in good time – the Charging/Collecting Authority needs to make a decision on whether or not they will grant the exemption/relief prior to you commencing your development.
  3. Submit a commencement notice to the Collecting Authority at least one day before the day you plan to commence development. If you send via post ensure you get proof of postage, if you drop it off in person ask for a receipt and if you have the time call the Collecting Authority to check they have received it.
  4. Read any liability or demand notice carefully. The notices specify the amount to be paid and the date by which it is payable. They will detail if you can pay in instalments and when they are to be paid. If in doubt check with the Collecting Authority and/or a planning professional.
  5. If you apply for and are granted an exemption/relief do not forget to submit a commencement notice – you will lose the benefit of that exemption/relief! NB: Regulation 67 provides that if you are granted an exemption for a residential extension no commencement notice is needed to be submitted. For the avoidance of doubt we would recommend confirming that no notice is required from the CIL Officer at the relevant Authority.
  6. If you think there is a mistake in the liability notice raise this with a professional and/or the Collecting Authority as soon as possible. Do not commence development until you are happy the mistake has been remedied. There are short time-limits within which to request a review and/or appeal.
  7. Do not assume that because a Collecting Authority has not sent you a liability notice that CIL is not payable. We have had experience of Collecting Authorities sending liability notices months (and even a year) after planning permission was granted!
  8. Be aware that you cannot apply for an exemption or relief in respect of retrospective planning applications – ensure you build out any developments granted an exemption or relief in accordance with the plans and specifications granted by planning permission!
  9. The CIL Regulations provide very little discretion and can be draconian in their application, particularly in respect of the lay person who does not know about the procedure and consequences and relies on advice from the local planning authority. Evidence of this can be seen from the application of surcharge s– see here. NB: Surcharges can be issued for a wide range of “failures” including a failure to assume liability, failure to submit a commencement notice and for late payment.
  10. We would recommend you seek advice as to the process and ensure that each of the relevant forms are submitted at the correct time.

For more information, please contact a member of our Planning and Environmental Law team.

This blog article was produced with support from Kayleigh Chapman.

This article is intended for the use of clients and other interested parties. The information contained in it is believed to be correct at the date of publication, but it is necessarily of a brief and general nature and should not be relied upon as a substitute for specific professional advice.