Covid-19 Coronavirus

Appeal procedures


Stage A. Submission and Statements of Case

A1. Appeal is received

What happens: An appeal is logged with Department of Environment Food and Agriculture Planning & Building Control Directorate. The person(s) submitting the appeal becomes the ‘Appellant(s)’. The appeal request must include whether the Appellants would like the written process or an inquiry. Once the Directorate has validated the appeal it is passed onto the Cabinet Office Appeals Team (CABO).

How long it takes: 4 weeks from the Decision Notice being issued - the 3 week appeal window (within which anyone with status can lodge an appeal) and 1 week for the Directorate to validate and refer any appeals received.

How you can avoid delays: Ensure your appeal request includes all of the information required (using the appeal form may assist with this).

More information: How to Appeal

A2. Statements of Case

What happens: On receipt of an appeal the CABO Appeals Team write out to all those with Interested Person Status (IPS) and the Planning & Building Control Directorate, giving a 21 day deadline for the submission of Statements of Case.

The Team will also set out the Appellants preferred means of appeal (written process or Inquiry). If the Appellant has requested the written process, anyone with IPS can insist instead that there is an Inquiry (provided the additional hearing fee is paid). If the Appellants have requested appeal by Inquiry, a provisional date for the Inquiry may be identified.

Statements from those without IPS can be accepted at the Inspector’s discretion, or can be included within statements submitted by those who do have IPS (for example if several people on a street have objected and only one has got IPS, their Statement could include comments from those residents who do not have IPS).

How long it takes: 4 weeks - the CABO Appeals team normally write out to parties within 1 week of receiving and appeal request, and then allow a 3 week timeframe for the submission of statements.

How you can avoid delays: Ensure your Statements of Case are submitted within the time period. If you are unable to attend a provisional Inquiry date, let the CABO Appeal team know as soon as possible.

A3. Publication of Statements of Case

What happens: The CABO Appeals Team will publish the Statements of Case online and will write to those with IPS to confirm a) that the statements have been published and b) to whether the appeal is to be dealt with by written representations or Inquiry.

How long it takes: It normally takes around a week to redact and publish statements online and write to advise of the next stage. The content of this correspondence is dependent on the type of process being followed – either Written Method or Inquiry (see below).

Stage B. Written Method

The Written Representations procedure can help to speed up the process, and reduce costs for all parties.

B1. Rebuttal Statements

What happens: The CABO Appeals Team will write to those with IPS and invite further comments/any response (Rebuttal Statements) in light of the Statements of Case which have been published.

How long it takes: 3 Weeks - the CABO Appeals team will normally request Rebuttal Statements within 1 week following the deadline for submission of Statements of Case and allow a 2-week timeframe for rebuttals to be submitted.

B2. Referral to Inspector and Site Visit

What happens: Once Rebuttal Statements are received the case is referred to an Independent Planning Inspector, who will carry out a site visit and consider all of the information and comments.

How long it takes: Inspectors visit the Island on a monthly basis to carry out site visits (this is during the same week as any Inquiry meetings are held).

Stage B. Inquiry

B1. Referral to Inspector and Inquiry Meeting Date Confirmed

What happens: The CABO Appeals Team refer the case to an Inspector and confirm the date of the Inquiry.

How long it takes: 4+ weeks. Appeals weeks occur once a month as an independent Inspector will come to the Island to conduct the review. However, the next available slot will depend on the overall case load and allow for the Inspector and participants sufficient time to prepare (normally 3 weeks).  It is not guaranteed that appeals will be heard during the first appeal week after Statements of Case have been submitted. 

How you can avoid delays: Ensure your Statements of Case are submitted within the time period. If you are unable to attend a provisional Inquiry date, let the CABO Appeal team know as soon as possible.

More Information: Appeal week schedules

B3. Site Visit

What happens: The Inspector will visit the site but will not discuss the application with any of the parties. This is because all interested parties have to make their case in writing, and discussing the matter with individual parties may be prejudicial to the appeal. On most occasions, a CABO Appeals Administrator will accompany the Inspector. There is normally no need for other people to take part in the site visit, unless the site cannot be seen properly from the road or public viewpoint. In such circumstance, the CABO Appeals Administrator will contact the relevant parties in advance for permission to gain access.

How long it takes: Usually the Monday of an Appeal Week.

B4. Inquiry Meeting

What happens: Inquiry hearings, when requested, are usually conducted by the Inspector in Government Offices. The Inspector will chair the meeting and will allow all parties opportunity to state their case, call any witnesses (which can include other people who have made comment but have not got Interested Person Status), and question any evidence produced by others.

It should be noted that hearings are not formal legal proceedings and where parties engage legal representation, such individuals cannot act in any legal capacity. In addition the costs of interested parties in Planning Appeals, including any representation, must be borne by the individual parties concerned.

The Inspector will open the hearing by explaining what the appeal is about.

Whilst the primary Appellant(s) remain those who originally paid the appeal fee, all other interested parties will be given opportunity to speak. The Inspector may give a summary of the Appellant and Department's case, and say which topics will be discussed. In most cases the Appellant will be asked to present their case, followed by any other parties present who support the Appellant's case.

The Department's representative will be called to present their case, followed by any other parties who support the decision taken.

Following the presentation of evidence, that evidence will be open to questions from those on the opposing side of the case, together with questions from the Inspector.

Although hearings are usually informal, they must be orderly if everyone involved is to have a fair hearing. The key point to remember is that the format of the hearing is for the Inspector to determine, although he/she is required to properly explain the format at the outset.

How long it takes: Inquiries are conducted during Appeal Week.

Stage C. Report

C1. Independent Planning Inspectors written recommendation

What happens: The Independent Planning Inspector considers all of the evidence and produces a report with recommendations. Irrespective of the recommendation, the report will always include suggested conditions in the event that Planning Approval is granted. Along with reasons for any refusal the report is submitted to the CABO Appeals Team.

How long it takes: The Independent Planning Inspector has a target of 4 weeks (28 days) to submit their report.

C2.  Referral to DEFA

What happens: The CABO Appeals team will refer the report to DEFA Corporate Services, who will check if the Independent Planning Inspector report is complete. If incomplete, they will report their findings back to the CABO Appeals Team who will liaise with the Independent Planning Inspector to provide any missing information. Once complete, the report is then passed onto the Minister of DEFA.

How long it takes: There is 1 week provided for Department of Environment Food and Agriculture Corporate Services to check the report. If, however there are issues to be raised an additional 2 weeks is given to collate this missing information/respond. This part of the process can therefore take up to 3 weeks.

Stage D. Decision

D1. Minister Consideration

What happens: Once the report is received, the DEFA Minister (or someone acting on their behalf) will consider the report of the independent Inspector and either allow or dismiss the appeal; and may in either case reverse or vary any part of its decision, whether or not the appeal relates to that part.

Because the Minister has a role in the planning appeal process it is important that the Minister remains impartial to any planning considerations pending any potential involvement in an appeal. Accordingly no approach should be made to the Minister for earlier input or involvement in a planning application or its consideration.

How long it takes: Up to 4 Weeks.

D2. Appeal Decision notice is issued

What happens: Department of Environment Food and Agriculture Corporate Services notify the applicant of the decision and passes the decision to the P&BC Directorate. The Directorate will then notify all parties with interested person status of the decision made.

How long it takes: Notification of the appeal decision is normally within 1 week from the Minister making their decision.

D3. Refund

What happens: Where an appeal is successful, on receipt of the decision, the DEFA P&BC team will initiate correspondence to enable a fee refund to the Appellant - the refundable element is the appeal fee only and NOT any additional fee made to have the appeal by way of Inquiry.

Back to top