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Planning and Development Certificates

An overview

A planning and development certificate (PDC) gives varying levels of important planning and approval information relating to a property. There are three types of PDC, each containing particular levels of detail. Depending on the type requested, a PDC can have many valuable uses for a prospective purchaser, developer or solicitor, including formal confirmation of:

  • The zoning and planning scheme provisions applying to the land
  • Current development approvals 
  • Unpaid infrastructure charges or court decisions affecting the property
  • The status of compliance with development approval conditions or infrastructure agreements

The Sustainable Planning Act 2009 sets out the level of information to be given and timeframes for provision of each certificate.

Types of planning and development certificate available

Council offers the following: 

  • Limited planning and development certificate
  • Standard planning and development certificate
  • Full planning and development certificate


Certificate typeWhat is included
Limited planning and development certificate This certificate provides general planning information relating to the property, including:
  • General planning scheme provisions, including zoning and overlays
  • Community infrastructure designations
  • State planning regulatory provisions applying to the property

This certificate does not include information about development approvals relating to the property or whether there are unpaid infrastructure charges owing to Council.

Standard planning and development certificateInformation provided in a standard PDC is more detailed. It includes all information provided in a limited PDC, as well as:
  • development approvals (including planning and building approvals*) that have not lapsed
  • minor changes to the development approval
  • compliance permits and certificates
  • details of decisions to amend a planning scheme and master plans
  • information for the premises in infrastructure charges register (including outstanding infrastructure charges owing to Council) 
  • judgments or orders of the Planning and Environment Court
  • agreements to which Council or a concurrence agency is a party about a condition of the development approval
  • infrastructure agreements to which Council is a party
  • proposed planning scheme amendments

A standard PDC does not provide any information regarding the fulfilment of development conditions.

* building approvals issued after 30 April 1998.

Full planning and development certificateInformation provided in a full PDC is the most comprehensive, and includes all information provided in a limited and standard PDC, as well as:
  • A statement about the fulfilment or non-fulfilment of each condition of a development approval, compliance permit or master plan currently in force
  • Details of infrastructure agreements and securities
  • Advice of prosecutions or proceedings for a development offence

Please note that this statement does not include approval conditions which contain ongoing requirements.

Which planning and development certificate best suits my needs?

Given the general planning information provided within a limited PDC, it is generally more suitable for residential properties where there is no commercial element to the land use. We would recommend that standard and full PDCs are generally more suitable for commercial or industrial properties or higher risk transactions. However, you should seek independent legal advice on your particular circumstances.

Further information

Please see our planning and development certificate fact sheet or FAQs for further information.

The latest version of the Sustainable Planning Act 2009 is available at the Office of the Queensland Parliamentary Counsel website.