Romania: Salvage of construction works executed without planning permission

Remedial procedure for compliance with legal requirements and maintenance of construction works executed without a building permit

At present, Article 28 of Law No. 50/1991 regarding the authorization of the execution of the construction works regulates a procedure for entering into legality of construction works that have been executed without a previous building permit or with exceeding the limits of the permit. In this respect, persons who execute or dismantle, in whole or in part, such work are liable to a contravention fine. In addition to this penalty, within the time limit stipulated in the administrative contravention report, measures may be imposed, among other remedies, to ensure that the construction works comply with the law.

In practical terms, the procedure for compliance with legal requirements offered those who had illegally raised or dismantled buildings the chance to remain in the desired situation without having to return to the previous situation if, within the above-mentioned time limit, the building permit had been obtained or changes had been made to the work to ensure that it was in conformity with the regulations in force.

A dilemma which has existed in Romanian civil law cases and which has led to divergent judicial solutions has regarded the consequence of not remedying irregularities within this time limit. Thus, if the steps to bring the building into compliance with the legal provisions were not implemented in time, there was a risk that the building would be automatically dismantled (the most drastic measure that could be applied) on expiry of the deadline set in the administrative contravention report.

The issue was resolved by Decision No. 10/2021 of the High Court of Cassation and Justice, the highest court in Romania, which provided an interpretation of the law that became binding when the decision entered into force on 29 October 2021. According to this decision, the time limit mentioned in the contravention report is a recommended time limit and not a mandatory one, so that measures to comply with the legal provisions can be taken even after this deadline. Consequently, the party concerned may ask the public authorities or the court, in the event of their refusal, to remedy these irregularities so that the construction work desired by the party concerned is not dismantled.

Following these legislative changes, the bnt team in Romania is at your disposal for further information, assistance in implementing the new legal provisions, as well as in drafting necessary documents.

Source: Decision No. 10 of 28 June 2021 of the High Court of Cassation and Justice on the interpretation and application of the provisions of Article 28 of Law No 50/1991 regarding the authorization of the execution of the construction works

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