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Lapsing Building Approvals

Servicing Cairns To Townsville, Western QLD To Mt Isa & Torres Strait

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Renew your lapsing building approval with ease

A lapsing building approval is an approval that expires. Basically, for most buildings excluding swimming pools and demolitions, you have two years in which to complete your project and have it inspected. With demolitions you have one-year. If you go outside of this time, you either need to renew your building approval or have it finalised.

Who can we help?

  • Commercial Builders
  • Developers
  • Architects
  • Pool Builders
  • Home Builders
  • Owner Builders
building certifiers cairns all construction approvals looking at a residential building approval

How do you know if your building approval has lapsed?

The best way to tell is to read your building approval from your certifier. In the document it should say the issue date and the date of lapsing. It is best to renew before the lapsing date. All Construction Approvals can assist you with renewing your lapsed building approval.

The Process

Before a building approval lapses, your certifier needs to send you a reminder notice (Form 57). This will give you at least three months in which to pay for a renewal, get your affairs in order and to make sure your approval is current. If you do not respond to the reminder notice and the approval gets lapsed it will need to be done as a new building approval and can be held to any new changes in the Building Code of Australia and The Queensland Planning/Building Acts that were incurred since your approval was initially issued.

It is best not to let your approval lapse and keep it current at all times until the project is completed. You can renew an approval once, but after that the certifier will need to check in with council for an approval to renew again. You will need to let council know why the building approval hasn’t been completed, for example, financial hardship or injury. Council will provide the certifier with a “yes” or “no” answer and your certifier will pass the information on to you.

A renewal usually only requires a minimal payment to keep your file open for another two years on the first renewal. If you renew for a second time, council may stipulate it will need to be completed within the year or only give you 6-months depending on your circumstances.

What area do you provide this service?

We are able to help you with lapsing approvals as long as you’re in Queensland and you have all of the supporting documents and certificates to verify the stage inspections were carried out as the job progressed through the approval process.

When do I need to renew a building approval?

Lapsed building approvals are pretty common and occur after you receive a Reminder Notice (Form 57) and do not respond to it. All Construction Approvals can assist you with rectifying them as long as you have the correct supporting documentation such as Form 16s for stage inspections along the way. We will still need to see all of the Form 16s from the contractors along the way, as well and they will need to be provided at time of the final inspection as per usual.

Choose the right building approval company

The ACA team are here to help. We have a wealth of experience when it comes to rectifying lapsed approvals. The process is easy if it was an approval we originally had. We should easily be able to keep moving along from where we initially left off in the approval process as we are diligent in keeping records on our files and inspections previously carried out.

When it comes to approvals that have lapsed that were previously at another certifier as long as the certifier did the right thing and sent the application to council, we should be able to track down the necessary documents and move-on from there. Please note, there is a fee from council when obtaining your records.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do files lapse?

Due to the Building Code of Australia and Queensland Development Code having regular changes, building approvals only last for a limited amount of time so we are able to keep these regulations in place as they change.

How long does a building approval last?

Most building approvals are good for two-years from the date of issue. Swimming pools must be checked within six months from the date of issue. Demolition approvals are good for one-year.

What if I have a development approval (DA), as well? Does that lapse with the building approval?

If you had to have a siting variation or code assessment, most of these last for two years. Most councils are happy to move forward with your DA as long as you have an active building approval in place. Once the building approval lapses you may need to apply for a new siting variation or code assessment, as well.

What do I do if my house building approval has lapsed?

If you want to proceed you will need to contact a certifier. From there, we can send you a new DA form 2 and engagement form. We will then have to assess your building approval and we will let you know if we need any further information or documentation. Please note, if you are up to the frame stage, for example, of your house, you will need proof that the Slab and Bond Beam stage inspections have been carried out. These are usually provided to you in the form of a Form 16 inspection certificate. Our certifiers can assist you if you do not have this documentation, but there will be more fees and time involved in rectifying the approval.

If I am unsure I’m moving ahead with my project, but the lapsing date is approaching, should I still renew?

It is a lot easier to renew an already existing file and keep it alive than trying to re-open a file. It is best just to renew as the fees and the work involved is a lot less for you. If for some reason it does lapse, and you decide to move forward you will need to pay more fees and re-fill out paperwork.


Thank you All Construction Approvals. Great service organising and coordinating and inspecting my project. You made it so easy. Would highly recommend all your helpful staff.

Suzan Quigg

Helpful when I needed guidance with my carport project and super quick when it came to approve it. Their fees also favourable, compared to competition. Very satisfied.

Joao Filipe Castro Santos

I have worked with ACApprovals professionally on a number of building projects for close to 10 years. ACA have always provided competitive fees, prompt/fair assessments, delivered information clearly to the design and construction team for smooth delivery of projects.

Paul Malone

The team a ACA are always helpful. no question is silly and the advice given is honest and accurate regardless of if its retrospective works or for the future. If you are not sure on the requirements pick up your phone and talk to a friendly building certifier.

Mark Leitner

All Construction Approvals provided excellent service following up on the paperwork and inspecting the building to confirm the renovation was completed in accordance with the Cairns Council's standards. Thanks Kim, Ethan and the ACA team.

Steve Willis

Every process runs smoothly and is dealt with in a highly professional manner. Even quick advice over the phone never seems to be too much of a hassle and is highly appreciated!

TinaCardinal Roofing and Sheds

I would not go to anyone else for the professional high level of service you firm provides. Your staff are highly efficient and knowledgeable and go out of their way to provide excellent service. Well done to all of you and don't change anything it all works well.

Terry PlosPlos Constructions Pty Ltd

About All Construction Approvals

All Construction Approvals (ACA) is a privately owned company formed in 2001 by Harald Weber. ACA was created in response to market demand for a personalised, reliable and consistent service in relation to building certification and consultancy work.

Our goal is to provide the highest level of professional service in building regulation and control. We offer innovative, cost effective, quality outcomes to ensure building compliance and project success.

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Call 07 4054 4588