Planning local authority searches
Planning local authority searches

The following Planning practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Planning local authority searches
  • Do I need a local authority search?
  • Identifying the correct authority
  • Types of enquiries
  • Standard searches
  • Optional searches
  • When to search
  • Fees
  • What do the replies mean for the recipient?
  • Replies to CON29R
  • More...

Do I need a local authority search?

Almost all transfers of property (whether commercial or residential) require a local authority search. It provides essential information about the land being purchased, enabling the purchaser to make an informed decision as to whether to proceed with acquiring an interest in the land.

This Practice Note looks specifically at planning-related issues revealed by local authority searches and search enquiries. For more information on property searches, see Practice Notes: Local Authority Search, Standard pre-contract searches, Additional pre-contract searches and Chancel repair liability.

Identifying the correct authority

Ensure the application for a local authority search is being made to the correct local authority, as boundaries are sometimes changed by local government. www.directgov.co.uk provides information on local authorities.

Note that the Infrastructure Act 2015 provides for the transfer of responsibility for local land charges (LLCs), which form part of a local authority search, from individual local authorities in England and Wales to a centralised national digital register maintained by H M Land Registry. The migration is being carried out in phases. More information, including on which authorities have moved to the centralised register, can be found here.

Types of enquiries

A local authority search is comprised of:

  1. LLC1 (submitted to the local authority or to the Land Registry as applicable)

  2. CON29 Part I/R

  3. CON29 Part II/O

Standard searches

The LLC1 and CON29 Part I or (‘R’ for

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