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Certificate of acceptance (CoA) for unconsented building work

A CoA provides a limited assurance that we are satisfied, on reasonable grounds, that unconsented building work complies with the current New Zealand Building Code.

Eligibility for a CoA

You can apply for a CoA only if building work was constructed without a building consent from 1 July 1992 onwards, or in specific circumstances, when a code compliance certificate (CCC) can't be issued.

A CoA may be issued for building works in the following circumstances:

  • when urgent work is carried out to protect life or health, or prevent serious damage to property, and it is not practical to obtain a building consent in advance

  • when a building consent authority (that is not a territorial authority or regional authority) or an organisation accredited to the BCA regulations is unable or refuses to issue a code compliance certificate for work carried out under a building consent.

Before you apply for CoA

Before you apply for a COA, we recommend you apply for and attend a CoA pre-application meeting. This is not mandatory, but is recommended.

The purpose of the meeting is to determine whether:

  • a project information memorandum (PIM) is required (this document contains planning and building advice)

  • a building consent is required (note that some building work is exempt from requiring a building consent under Schedule 1 of the Building Act)

  • resource consent is required (all work must comply with The Unitary Plan. If resource consent is required then this must be obtained first)

  • the building work is likely to obtain approval.

Request a CoA pre-application meeting

To request a CoA pre-application meeting, visit our request pre-application guidance page.

When we confirm your CoA pre-application meeting, we may request additional information or documents. You should provide these at least three working days before the meeting.

Application fees for CoA 

Read fee table.
Description Fee
Project value up to $19,999 $1200
Project value $20,000 and over$2000

Apply for a CoA

You can apply for a CoA for all or part of a building, but you need to supply as much information as possible in relation to the work that has been done.

How we assess unauthorised building work

Read the information on how we assess unauthorised building work.

What you need to provide

Attach the applicable lodgement checklist with your application.

You may also need to provide evidence from a professional, to help us assess how the work complies with the current New Zealand Building Code, particularly for building work we cannot inspect, such as foundations.

If you have attended a pre-application meeting, you will need to submit the meeting minutes with your application.

How to apply for a CoA


​Apply now

We only accept online applications for this certificate. If you are unable to apply digitally, visit one of our service centres for assistance in making your online application.

Call us on 09 301 0101 to speak with our building and planning help desk if you have questions regarding your application.

What happens next

We can take up to 20 working days to assess your COA application.

We will let you know by email if your COA is approved or declined.


You should know

It is an offence to carry out building work for which you need a building consent before you get a building consent.
Any building work we cannot verify as complying with the building code will be listed on the certificate of acceptance as exclusions.
If you can't demonstrate compliance with the building code, we may refuse to issue a COA, and you may also need to remove the building work.
Issuing a COA for unauthorised building work does not limit us from taking further enforcement action.

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