Have you been served a notice from Council?
Abatement notices, enforcement orders or notices to fix can be complex matters to resolve. There are many examples of people having unintentionally carried out work without obtaining the right approvals from Council. You may not even know that you needed a building consent exemption or a resource consent.
You are not alone. Council understand that navigating building code and resource consent requirements can be tricky and they will generally work with you or your consultants to make things right. This is where we can help you.
We offer a complete range of professional services that can assist you with:
- Abatement Notices
- Notice to Fix
- Enforcement Orders
Contact our Planning team today to get the ball rolling.
1. Abatement Notice
An Abatement Notice is a warning issued by Council, to an individual or organisation, that the individual/organisation has not complied with the relevant rules of a District or Regional Plan. You have a right to appeal an abatement notice to the Environment Court. If an abatement notice is not complied with an no appeal is lodged, you could be prosecuted by the Local Council. This is where our team can work with Council to either ensure that the correct resource consent approvals are obtained, or otherwise assist you to ensure the work is rectified on site to remove identified infringements in the abatement notice.
2. Notice to Fix
A Notice to Fix is a legal document requiring a person to comply with the rules and regulations in the Building Act. All building works must top until a certain date specified by the Council. Not complying with a Notice to Fix within the required time frame is a serious offence and individuals or companies may be liable for a fine up to $200,000. Again, our team can work with Council and yourself to ensure that either the correct approvals are obtained (such as a Certificate of Acceptance or Exemption), or the work is rectified on site satisfactorily.
2. Enforcement Order
An Enforcement Order is an order made by the Environment Court, requiring a person or organisation to comply with the requirements of the Resource Management Act, a rule a district or regional plan or resource consent condition. You must comply with an Enforcement Order otherwise you could be fined up to $300,000 (for individuals) or up to $600,000 (for any parties other than individuals). In this instance, our team would work urgently with Council to either authorise the works, or to rectify those works to Council’s satisfaction.
Options for Resolution
Depending on the situation, there can be more options to resolve a compliance matter than you may realise. This is why it is important to stay calm and get some professional advice. Based on our experience we also strongly recommend that you act quickly. If an abatement notice or notice to fix is not dealt with swiftly there can be serious consequences such as a prosecution and fines. In addition, we believe that by making early contact with Council, it is possible to establish some goodwill that can assist in resolving the trickier compliance issues.
Our team can:
- Visit your property to discuss your different options onsite
- Undertake pre-application meetings with Council to determine the best course of action to address a notice, and to seek extension where necessary
- Prepare / submit a retrospective resource consent application
- Prepare / submit a retrospective certificate of acceptance or exemption application
- Work with Council to resolve your notice
- Appeal your Abatement Notice.
Received a notice? Don’t stress, but please don’t ignore it either – get in touch with our team today so we can help you as soon as possible.