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Opinion: Permit Expiration

Inquiry:

01-01

Subject:

Permit Expiration

Code:

1997 Uniform Building Code (UBC) Section 106.4.4 (yr, title section)

Submitted By:

Columbine Corporation

Approved By:

Thomas R. Joachim, State Building Official

Issue Date:

September 14, 2001

Question:

Work was done on a single-family dwelling in each of the 180-day periods over a three-year period. Would the permit expire because of the amount of time it took to complete the project.

Answer:

No, the code does not address a maximum time period allowed to complete the work designated on the permit. The permit stays active unless work is suspended or abandoned for a period of 180 days.

Division comments:

A Building Department may require an inspection every 180 days under UBC Section 108.7, "Other inspections," but must make the permit applicant aware that it is a required inspection and will be applied if and when the situation arises.

There is some discretion involved on the part of the local jurisdiction in evaluating the suspension or abandonment of the project. If it can be shown that the contractor has been working towards completing the project by the installation of utilities, work on framing, the erection of interior partitions, or other such construction work, then that may be used as evidence of an intention to complete the project. However, a minor amount of grading or the shifting of materials or other minor "cosmetic" treatments would not be an indication of progress towards completion. Each job should be considered on a case-by-case basis.

The burden of proof is on the building official to document inspections to show that the work was suspended or abandoned for a period of 180 days.

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