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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2015/073: Regarding the issue of a notice to fix for building work carried out without building consent and non-compliance with the Building Code

This determination discusses who can be issued with a notice to fix, in particular when building work was undertaken by a previous owner without building consent having been obtained. It also considers the compliance of building work and discusses circumstances where building work departs from Acceptable Solutions or New Zealand Standards.

Note: This Determination was set aside by order by the District Court as a result of an appeal under section 208 of the Building Act. The Court order was made by consent of the parties after the respondent Council conceded it failed to comply with the statutory provisions governing notices to fix.

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2015/072: Regarding the compliance with the Building Code of repairs to the foundations of an earthquake damaged house

This determination considers the compliance of the building work carried out with Clauses B1 and B2, and discusses whether there is an obligation to comply with Clause E1.3.2 of the Building Code when repairs are carried out to foundations. The determination also discusses whether the building work carried out was exempt under Schedule 1.

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2015/070:Regarding the refusal to issue a building consent for the change of use from commercial to residential of one level in a multi-level building

This determination discusses the assessment required under section 115 when there is a change of use to only part of a building, particularly how the phrase “the building, in its new use” in section 115 applies and in respect of Building Code clause B1 Structure. The discussion also considers information provided by way of an Initial Seismic Assessment (ISA) in relation to that assessment, and the separate functions performed by authorities under section 112 and section 115.

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2015/051: Regarding the issue of a building consent for a 1 year-old house

This determination discusses the approach to be taken in assessing documentation provided in support of a building consent application, and whether the documentation provided in this instance was adequate in terms of the decision to grant consent. The determination also addresses amendments to the consent and the compliance achieved.

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2015/016: Regarding the compliance of repairs to a foundation slab of a house

Determination arose from repairs carried out as exempt building work by the Project Management Office as established by the Earthquake Commission, and whether the repaired concrete floor slab on ground subject to liquefaction and categorised as Foundation Technical Category 2 (TC2) complies with the Building Code. Discussed whether the work required building consent or was exempt under Schedule 1 (a) and whether the repair work constitutes a “substantial” replacement.

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2015/011: Regarding the compliance of masonry block walls to a 19 year-old garage

Discussed whether masonry walls complied with Clause B1 of the Building Code that was in force at the time the consent was granted. Related to building work that was carried out without inspections, and whether there was sufficient evidence to establish compliance.

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2015/003: Compliance of a retaining wall between two properties

Discussed the protection of “other property” in relation to Clause B1.3.6, and whether exempt building work is required to comply with the Building Code. Also discussed the compliance of the retaining wall with Clause B1.3.1, and the appropriate regulatory action in relation to the issue of a code compliance certificate for work found to be not compliant.

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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: