Unauthorised Works And Enforcement

Have you carried out work without a Building Warrant, or work that is not approved in your Building Warrant, or do you need a 'Letter of Comfort' ?

Building works carried out without statutory consent

The Building Standards Service on behalf of the Local Authority is charged with the responsibility of enforcing the requirements of Part 3 of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 in respect of buildings constructed without warrant or where compliance with the Building Regulations has not been met.
Where a contravention has occurred the service may serve a compliance or enforcement Notice. Failure to comply with the requirements of a Notice may result in this Service executing the necessary works and recovering all expenses from the relevant party. However, wherever possible, the Service attempts to resolve an issue of this nature through discussion rather than immediately instigating statutory action.

Should you wish to deviate from the approved Building Warrant, you should always contact the Service prior to undertaking any works. Failure to do so may result in expense in rectifying works to achieve compliance with the building regulations, or delays in issuing a Certificate of Completion.

Letters of Comfort

The Building (Scotland) Act 2003 and it's predecessor, The Building (Scotland) Act 1959 both require that a Warrant is granted prior to any building or demolition work being undertaken. However property owners, or previous owners, sometimes carry out works without approval. This usually causes problems when the property is to be sold, because as part of the conveyancing process, a lawyer requests copies of the Building Warrant and/or Completion Certificate relating to the works. Where neither of these documents is available, a ‘Letter of Comfort’ may be issued by the Service, which is generally acceptable to the legal profession.

Only works completed between 15 June 1964 and  30 April 2005 will be considered for a 'Letter of Comfort'. For works completed after this date please refer to the Guidance Notes below for further information.

At the discretion of this authority, the Service will undertake a non-disruptive inspection of the work, with regard to the health and safety of people in and around the building.
We shall endeavour to respond to a written request for a non-statutory inspection (accompanied by the appropriate fee) within 10 working days of receipt to arrange to carry out an inspection.
Please note that the inspection may result in the need for remedial works to be undertaken by the applicant before the ‘Letter of Comfort’ can be issued. Failure to instigate remedial action may result in statutory action being taken by the Service.

Following the inspection, and the applicant undertaking any necessary remedial work, the Service will issue a ‘Letter of Comfort’ stating that the Service does not intend to take any statutory action in respect of the unauthorised works.

Letter Of Comfort Application Forms can be obtained in person from:

Building Standards Section
Planning Division
City Development Department
Floor 6, Dundee House
50 North Lindsay Street
Dundee DD1 1LS

For further information or advice please contact 01382 434000 or email bs@dundeecity.gov.uk