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How long is the planning permission process in London

Tuesday 04 June 2019

How long is the planning permission process in London?

We receive many enquiries from our clients, but this is definitely one of the popular ones.

Once the council receive the planning application and once the council fee is paid, the administration team will validate the application. This can take up to 10 working days but will vary depending on the council and their workload. Once an application is validated, the application will be registered on the council website with a planning reference number. The council would usually notify the applicant and their agent that the application has been made valid, and advise the target decision date, which is usually 8 weeks from validation.

For more complex applications and for applications involving the creation of 10+ residential units the target decision date is minimum 13 weeks from validation. If an application is delegated to a planning committee, then the process can be delayed by several weeks.

If an application is subject to an Environmental Impact Assessment the process can take approx. 16 weeks for a decision to be made.


How is a planning application assessed?

Once the application has been validated by the admin team, a planning officer will be assigned to the case. The case officer would usually start the consultation process by notifying the neighbours in writing. The consultation period is usually 21 days and allows neighbours the opportunity to support or object to a planning application that would impact on them.

The planning officer would then assess the application and take into consideration any representations in favour or against the development which are material considerations. The case officer would also arrange a site visit to see the property and neighbours. The site visit is usually carried out towards the end of the 8 week period.

Once the application is assessed by the case officer, the application will be recommended for approval or refusal. The senior planners or line manager would usually overlook the decision to give a second opinion. Once the recommendation is accepted, the admin team will issue the decision notice and the council website will be updated with the decision outcome.

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