Permits A Construction Attorney’s Advice for Navigating the Approval Process - Alves Radcliffe

Permits: A Construction Attorney’s Advice for Navigating the Approval Process

Construction regulations differ in every state, but one thing is consistent — you need to get the appropriate permits before doing any construction work. Permitting is a legal process that can often feel like navigating a puzzle.

Decoding the Permit Puzzle

What permits do you need to construct a new building or add to a building? The answer often depends on exactly what is being added, the location’s zoning, and what the new construction will be used for. The approval process is likely to differ every time you start a project.

The Legal Landscape

When applying for appropriate permits, you need to contact the right authorities (typically, local building authorities), file the appropriate paperwork, and pay all fees. Your approval paperwork will need to account for:

There are enough factors that even if you are well-prepared, the process could potentially take anywhere from six months to a year.

Signs You Need a Construction Attorney for Permits

Arguably, it is always safer to have a construction attorney guiding you through the process when applying for permits. But you may feel you don’t need one for relatively simple jobs that don’t require immediate attention. 

The jobs that most require the assistance of a construction lawyer are ones where you need an expedited permit, like construction work for emergency repairs.

Permit Success

The importance of successfully getting a permit before starting a construction project can’t be understated. 

In Colusa County, for example, the penalty for failing to obtain a permit is $5,000 per missing permit plus the cost of any permits that were required. That is an expensive reminder to get permits. Additionally, you could have your contractor’s license revoked for failing to get the appropriate permits.

Proactive Legal Measures

If your goal is to get all required permits with as little red tape as possible, the best approach is to be proactive. Hire an experienced California construction attorney and make sure all your paperwork is in order before contacting the local permitting authorities. At a minimum, you will need:

  • Blueprints of planned construction, including electrical and plumbing installations
  • Site plans showing any current buildings
  • Individual floor plans, including foundation plans
  • Environmental and land surveys
  • A projected timeline for the construction

Your attorney will help ensure you have all the right documentation and will assess the project legally, identifying all the approvals you need before you begin work.

Choosing the Right Construction Attorney

California is home to hundreds, if not thousands, of lawyers. How can you know which is the best for your project?

You need an experienced construction attorney who will handle the bureaucracy so you can focus on your contractor business. This means you need a lawyer who will:

  • Craft an application and submit all documentation to the right legal authorities
  • Track the progress of the permit process and regularly contact those authorities
  • Respond quickly and accurately to any questions by permitting authorities
  • Notify you immediately upon permit issuance so you can get started promptly
  • Oversee the legal side of the project to ensure you remain compliant throughout

An attorney who simply files the paperwork and does nothing more will leave you in the lurch.

Take the Permitting Process Seriously

Getting a permit for a construction process can be a nightmare, or it can be a breeze. An experienced construction lawyer from Alves Radcliffe will help you check all the boxes and speed up the process. Contact our law firm today to speak to a construction attorney.

Comments are closed.