This circular explains the new procedures for handling enforcement appeals in England. The aim is to reduce the time and cost incurred by the handling of these appeals, emphasising the responsibility of all parties involved. The circular highlights the ways in which all three procedures - written representations, hearings and inquiries - are operated to determine enforcement notice appeals.
For all appeals, there is to be a new emphasis on co-operation between the parties and the minimisation of paperwork. There will be a general preference to use hearings rather than inquiries. But where inquiries are necessary, they have to focus on the critical issues and avoid inessential detail.
The Inspector will exercise tight control over advocacy and cross-examination and a regime of discipline will be put in place for all parties. Timetables will have to be adhered to, except in extraordinary circumstances.
Annexes set out the regulations relating to enforcement notices and appeals, how written representations should be made and procedures for hearings and inquiries. Pre- and post-appeal considerations are outlined and the comments offered on the choice of procedure by the parties.
The parties are reminded of their liability to pay costs if they behave unreasonably and thus cause unnecessary expense to other parties.