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Emergency Bill extends duration of Planning Permissions in Scotland

Friday, 10 April 2020

The Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 received Royal Assent on 6 April and came into force on 7 April.  The Act contains numerous emergency powers including an extension to the duration of planning permissions which are due to expire on or before 7 October 2020.

The Act defines the “emergency period” as the period of 6 months after the Act comes into force and the “extended period” as 12 months from the date on which the provisions come into force.  What this essentially means is that any planning permission that would otherwise lapse during the “emergency period” (between 7 April and 7 October 2020) will automatically be extended until 6 April 2021 to allow work to start on implementing the permission once restrictions are lifted.  

We would advise that the same time extension applies to planning permissions in principle (PPP).  However, as well as the overall duration, attention must be paid to the time limits for applying for any approval of matters specified in conditions (AMSC) attached to a PPP.  In relation to applications for AMSC, if the last date for making an application for an AMSC is within the emergency period then the time limit for making such an application will now be to the end of the extended period (i.e. on or before 6 April 2021).

Most measures in the Act will expire automatically 6 months after they come into force however Scottish Ministers can amend the duration of the “emergency” and “extended” periods if required by Regulations.  The Act can be viewed via the following link


Emergency Bill extends duration of Planning Permissions in Scotland

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