Certificate of Acceptance
Certificates of acceptance are based on the Building Code at the time the application is made rather than what was in place at the time a building consent was granted, should have been applied for, or when the work was actually carried out.
Applying for a certificate of acceptance
An owner may apply for a certificate of acceptance when any of the following situations occur:
- Where an owner (or predecessor in title) carried out building work for which a consent was required but was not obtained (under either the 1991 or 2004 Acts).
- Where a building consent authority that is not a territorial or regional authority is unable or refuses to issue a code compliance certificate in respect of building work for which it granted a building consent.
- Where a building certifier is unable or refuses to issue a code compliance certificate or building certificate.
- Where building work started or consented before 31 March 2005 affects public premises.
An owner must apply for a certificate of acceptance for building work carried out urgently (see section 42 of the Building Act 2004).
The fact that a certificate of acceptance can be issued does not relieve a person from the requirement to obtain a building consent for their building work. We still have the ability to issue a notice to fix and to prosecute.
A certificate of acceptance cannot be issued if:
- building work was carried out prior to 1 July 1992 (when the building consent provisions of the Building Act 1991 came into force).
- a building consent was ever obtained for the work concerned (except in the situation where a building certifier or building consent authority that is not a territorial or regional authority is unable or refuses to issue a code compliance certificate or if building work, started or consented before 31 March 2005, affects public premises).
Download and complete a Certificate for Acceptance Application (PDF, 100KB) and submit to us with your payment or use our easy online form. Please note that you will need to create a new (or use an existing) online services account with us to complete this form online. We will email you a sundry invoice once we have checked the application.
Applications must include generic information as well as the following:
- Current lawfully established use including number of occupants per level and per use (if more than one).
- Whether the use was changed by the building work this application relates to. State the previous use.
- Total floor area affected by the building work.
- People undertaking the building work.
- Reason why the certificate of acceptance is required.
- Reason why a building consent was not applied for.
The Building Act 2004 requires this form to be accompanied by:
- Plans and specifications.
- The fee as set out in the Fees and Charges Schedule (PDF, 551KB). (If you are using our online application form we will email a sundry invoice to you after checking your application).
- Any fees, charges or levies that would have been payable had the owner (or the owner’s predecessor in title) applied for a building consent before carrying out the building work, where the application relates to work done without a consent where one was required.
- A project information memorandum, if one has been issued.
- A list of all the specified systems for the building and those that are being altered, added to or removed from the building in the course of the building work, if a compliance schedule or an amended compliance schedule is required as a result of the building work.
We have 20 working days from the date the certificate of acceptance application is received to decide whether to grant or refuse the application.
We may request more information about the application within the 20 working days from the date the application was received. When such a request is made, the 20-working-day period is suspended until we receive the requested information.
Certificate of Public Use
The provisions for a Certificate for Public Use came into force on 14 April 2005.
It is a way to certify that a premises, or parts of a premises, affected by building work are safe to be used by members of the public.
Certificates for public use are only able to be used where a consent has been granted for the building work but a code compliance certificate has not yet been issued. Certificates for public use do not relieve the owner of a building from the obligation to apply for a code compliance certificate after all the building work has been carried out.
Applying for a certificate for public use
A person who owns, occupies or controls premises intended for public use may apply for a Certificate or Public Use for the premises or part of the premises if:
- a building consent has been granted for building work affecting part or all of the premises.
- no code compliance certificate has been issued for the work.
We must decide whether to issue the certificate for public use within 20 days after receiving the application.
Within the period described above, we may require the applicant to give further reasonable information in respect of the application. If more information is requested, the period is suspended until that information is received.
Complete a Certificate for Public Use Application Form (PDF, 60KB) and submit to us with your payment or use our easy online form. Please note that you will need to create a new (or use an existing) online services account with us to complete this form online. We will email you a sundry invoice once we have checked the application.
Obtaining a certificate for public use does not relieve the owner of a building of the obligation to apply to a building consent authority for a code compliance certificate after all the building work carried out under the building consent has been completed.
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