02 May 2017

What is Community Infrastructure Levy?

The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) is a planning charge introduced by the Planning Act 2008 as a tool for local authorities in England and Wales. Monies from CIL can help local authorities deliver infrastructure to support the development of their area, such as travel improvements and schools. Here, Sarah Chilcott, Managing Director of Planning Portal, explains further.

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Who has to pay CIL?

Most new developments which create net additional floor space of 100m² or more, or creates a new dwelling, is potentially liable for the levy. This includes developments permitted by a ‘general consent’.

If your local planning authority has chosen to set a fee in its area, you may be liable for a charge under CIL. In October 2016, 130 authorities were charging CIL (not including the Mayor of London and the London Legacy Development Corporation), according to a report by the CIL Review Team. A further 88 were working towards adopting a CIL.

Your responsibilities for CIL as a self-builder

It is vital that you check the most up-to-date authoritative guidance on the Community Infrastructure Levy before carrying out your project. If you are unsure of anything, contact your local authority planning department.

Once planning permission is granted, the authorities will issue a levy liability notice. You then need to submit an Assumption of Liability form (Form 1: Assumption of Liability) to the collecting authority. If you want to withdraw or transfer your liability, you must complete and submit either ‘Form 3: Withdrawal of Assumption of Liability’ or ‘Form 4: Transfer of Liability’ to the collecting authority.

Paying the Community Infrastructure Levy

• If you are required to pay CIL, your local authority will inform you of the cost by sending you a demand notice
• If developments, and the levy, are above a certain size, your local authority may allow you to pay in instalments
• Once all requirements are met, payment is due within 60 days of the commencement of development, or as set out in the payment instalments policy set by the authority
• If you fail to pay the levy, you may be charged a penalty which could be payable immediately
• You are entitled to appeal the charge within 60 days of your local authority issuing the liability notice.

Exemptions to CIL for self-builders

Some developments, including self-build projects, may be eligible for relief or exemption from CIL. It is important to note that strict requirements apply to the timing of the exemption process. In most cases, a Commencement Notice (Form 6) must also be served prior to the commencement of development, in order for the exemption to apply.

Claims for a self-build exemption relating to a whole house should be submitted on ‘Form 7: Self Build Exemption Claim Form Part 1’ and followed by further supporting information when the development is finished on ‘Form 7: Self Build Exemption Claim Form Part 2’. This must be submitted within six months of completing the dwelling.

Claims for a self-build exemption relating to a residential annex should be submitted on ‘Form 8: Self Build Residential Annex Exemption Claim Form’. Whereas, claims for a self-build exemption relating to a residential extension should be submitted on ‘Form 9: Self Build Residential Extension Exemption Claim Form’.

Please note, where an exemption has been approved by the collecting authority, the applicant becomes liable for the full amount if they fail to serve a commencement notice before starting the development.

Please click here for direct access to forms.

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