Area of Law: Construction Law
Answer Number: 1963
Who is responsible for zoning and permits?Region: Ontario Answer Number: 1963
Ultimately, the owner of a property is responsible for ensuring all required permits are obtained. That said, it is common for the contractor, as part of his or her contract, to apply for and obtain any building or other permits. Usually this is because the contractor understands what information must be supplied to the municipality.
In some cases, such as construction of a backyard deck or other small project, it may be less expensive for the homeowner to approach the municipality for a permit since contractors might have to supply more extensive documentation, such as an architect drawings or engineering reports.
The risks in not securing proper permits can be huge. For example, an inspector for your municipality can shut down the work site, levy a large fine to the property owner, and even insist the unpermitted work or structures be torn down and removed.
Visit the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing website for more information and a listing of Ontario municipalities.
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