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Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practicing lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.
May I ask if the freeholders or leaseholders carried out the alterations please?
Thanks. Do you know if the alterations were made in breach of an existing planning condition associated with a previous planning permission or simply without obtaining planning permission but not otherwise in breach of a condition?
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The local authority cannot take action in respect of the alterations after the expiry of 4 years from the completion of the work if the work was carried out without permission but otherwise not in breach of any existing planning condition.
For your information, though from what you say it does not apply, if the balconies had been altered in breach of an existing condition, the period would be 10 years.
If the landlord can demonstrate that the works is more than 4 years old, ideally with invoices for the works and witness statements or other supporting evidence it can apply for a certificate of retrospective consent though it should not do so until it has solid evidence as above as this will alert the council to the issue which would be unfortunate if the landlord is a little flimsy on its evidence.
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