Previous determinations

Determinations are made by MBIE on matters of doubt or dispute to do with building work. Rulings are legally binding, but only in relation to each case.

Previous determinations may provide some useful guidance for those faced with similar problems, but note that individual circumstances may vary.

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2019/063: Regarding the compliance of a paved path and retaining wall without a safety from falling barrier with Clause F4 Safety from falling

This determination considers the compliance of a paved path and retaining wall without a safety from falling barrier with Building Code Clause F4 Safety from falling.  The determination discusses the measurement of the height of fall.

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2019/062: Regarding the means of escape from fire from a new dwelling located behind an existing dwelling

This determination concerns a new dwelling constructed at the rear of a site with an existing dwelling, and compliance of the new dwelling in relation to movement to a place of safety in the event of a fire.  The matter at issue is whether the escape route to a safe place for the occupants of the rear dwelling required a protected path past the existing dwelling.

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2019/061: Regarding the compliance of a surface water drainage connection

This determination considers whether a surface water drain complies with Building Code Clause E1 Surface water: the drain collects water from a roof and is connected to a kerb sump and not directly to a surface water drain.  The authority considers the connection to the sump was contrary to the means of compliance stated in the building consent, being the Acceptable Solution for Clause E1, and that approval should be sought for the work as a minor variation to the consent.

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2019/060: Regarding compliance with Building Code Clause B1 Structure of a multi-storey steel framed building

This determination considers the compliance of a recently-completed eight-storey steel framed building. Specific aspects of the completed frame had been brought to the notice of the authority, and the authority also questioned work carried out that varied from the approved consent. The determination considers the compliance of these matters in respect of Building Code Clause B1 Structure

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2019/059: Regarding the issue of a building consent with a section 73 condition

This determination considers whether the building consent should have been issued subject to a section 73 condition, which requires notification of a natural hazard to be placed on the land title. The determination considers whether the land is subject to a natural hazard, and whether the building work was a ‘major alteration’. 

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2019/058: The durability of steel sub-floor bearers built under building consents issued on the basis of national multiple-use approvals

This determination considers whether galvanised steel bearers used in subfloor framing to four houses meet the required minimum 50-year durability period described in Building Code Clause B2.3.1(a). The building consents for the houses were in respect of work described in national multiple-use approvals issued under section 30F of the Act. The houses have been built and the authority has refused to issue the code compliance certificates for the as-built work because it is of the view the bearers do not comply with Clause B2 Durability.

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2019/057: Regarding the issue of a notice to fix for building work carried out without a building consent and over a property boundary

This determination considers the decision to issue a notice to fix for the construction of a storage building made up of relocated shipping containers and a roof. The authority is of the view that building work has been carried out which required building consent and therefore there has been a contravention of Section 40. As the building crosses a boundary into an adjacent allotment, the authority is also of the view there has been a contravention of section 75. This determination also discusses whether the containers have undergone a change of use.

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2019/056: Refusal to grant a building consent in respect of the geotechnical information and proposed foundation design for a proposed building

This determination considers whether sufficient information was provided to support an application for building consent for a multi-unit building in relation to the building’s foundation design. The building is located on land that is being developed for subdivision and the determination also considers matters related to the identification of natural hazards on the site.

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2019/055: Regarding the authority’s decision to issue a building consent with a section 37 certificate attached, for a proposed building

This determination considers the decision by the authority to issue a building consent with a section 37 certificate attached.  The determination discusses what the section 37 test ‘will or may materially affect building work’ means.

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2019/054: Regarding the issue of five notices to fix for a collection of buildings constructed without building consent

This determination concerns an authority’s issue of five notices to fix for building work carried out on a rural property.  The determination considers the time the owner was given to respond to the notices, and the non-compliances identified in the notices against the compliance of the work concerned. The determination also discusses the limitation period in which an authority shall take enforcement action following the issue of a notice to fix.

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This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: