Recent amendments to the Planning and Construction Law additionally facilitate the process of obtaining a building permit

Real Estate

Ivan Gazdić

Publisher: Bojović Drašković Popović & Partners

The amendments to the Planning and Construction Law entered into force last week, which additionally facilitate the process of obtaining a building permit for certain categories of facilities.

However, some solutions have opened a discussion of legal certainty and predictable of a business environment. For example, the procedure of obtaining a building permit for infrastructure facilities (e.g. roads, railroads) has been simplified, by envisaging that those facilities can be built even before the investor has settled ownership relations for the land, only based on the investor’s statement that it will resolve the ownership before the use permit is obtained.

Another example is that a commercial - industrial complex has been added to the category of facilities for which special rules shall apply for formation of a construction plot, so now the commercial - industrial complex can be built even on a construction plot that deviates from the surface or position envisaged by the planning document of that zone.

The problematic provision which prevented the issuance of a building permit was amended, where an inscription of a dispute over the property’s ownership had been filed with the real estate cadaster. In practice, this provision used to be abused for vexatious litigations to harass or subdue an investor, blocking his real estate project until the final resolution of a frivolous litigation. After adoption of amendments of law, the inscription of a dispute over the property’s ownership no longer prevents the issuance of a building permit (however, the permit will be issued at the investor's risk).

In addition, Law on Procedure of Registration in the Cadaster of Real Estate and Underground Installations, has been amended, by preventing inscription of annotations on the land which is the subject to expropriation, and envisaging a priority of the cadaster cases in relation to expropriated land. The aim of these amendments is to accelerate development and construction of infrastructure projects.