Department of Building and Safety will be closed on Thursday and Friday, November 26 and 27, 2015 in observance of Thanksgiving Holiday. Thank you for doing business in the City of Los Angeles.
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|Building Research Section|
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LADBS Codes link for detailed information regarding the codes we
Also known as an Online Permit, e-permit is a service we
provide to expedite less complex permit type. Click the link to
obtain permits via the Internet or to see a list of permits that are
A homeowner can obtain a permit and do the construction,
alteration or repair on his/her house and accessory buildings or
facilities thereto if the owner resides or will reside in the
A permit is not required for any type of fence under
3'6" in height. A permit is required for a masonry or concrete
fence over 3'6" in height, and for a fence of any other
material over 10'0" in height. Please note that even though a
permit may not be required, all fences must comply with the
requirements of the LA Zoning Code
In most residential areas, fences are limited to 3'-6"
in height in the front yard and 6'-0 in the side and rear yards.
Depending on lot size and location, the height limit may be
increased to 8'-0 for the side and rear yards. The regulations can
be found in Section 12 22 C 20 (f) of the LA Zoning Code
A complete set of plans showing the proposed work is brought into the Department. A permit is issued after the plan are reviewed and approved by our plan check engineers. A complete set of plans includes:
No, when done as part of the City's "Water Conservation
Retrofit Program" pursuant to the City's Water Conservation
regulations. A non owner occupied single family dwelling requires a
permit obtained by a licensed plumbing contractor.
Yes, unless the work is performed by a contractor that holds
a valid Certificate of Registration from LADBS as a Certified
Licensed Contractor (CLC). The CLC is limited to the replacement of
a water heater of equivalent capacity in gallons, BTU rating, and
A plumbing permit is required for the installation of any gas
piping except piping less than 6 feet in length between an existing
gas outlet and a gas appliance in the same room.
You have until 12:00 noon of the third day that the office of
LADBS is open for public business.
Yes. The space must be able to be maintained at a room
temperature of 70 degrees F. at a point 3 feet above the floor in
all habitable areas.
If it is a building code issue, you may file a request for modification. Please refer to the Structural Plan Check Request for Modification section for reference. In approving such a request, the Department needs to determine that the slight modification is reasonably equivalent to the ordinance requirement involved, that a special individual reason makes the strict letter of the ordinance impractical, and that the slight modification is in conformity with the spirit and purpose of the Code involved.
If the request is denied by the Department, it may be appealed to the Board of Building and Safety Commissioners .
If it is a Planning Code issue, this Department can only
review and act on items stipulated in Section 12.26, specifically,
yard variances not exceeding 20% of the required yard and parking
facility design as published in Sec. 12.21A5. (Reprint from Planning
Code Section 12.26). All other request for changes from the Planning
Code shall be filed with the
Planning Department .
A permit expires, a) in two years from the date of its issuance, b) if no work has been started within six months from its issuance, or c) work has started but stopped for over six months.
However, within 30 days of its expiration, an extension of
time to extend a permit may be filed with the Department using
Form 41 or
Form 42 . The request shall be filed with the inspection district
supervisor if no work has been started. If the permit has expired
and the work has started, the request shall be filed with any plan
Inspection Related Questions
All construction work for which a permit is required shall be
subject to inspection by authorized inspectors. It is your
responsibility to notify the inspector when the work is ready for
inspection. Work is generally inspected and approved in succession
and no work may continue beyond the point indicated in each
successive inspection without first obtaining the approval of the
inspector. Common items to be inspected are foundation excavations,
concrete work, wood framing, ventilation equipment, plumbing,
electrical, shear wall nailing, roof nailing etc. When completed,
there shall be a final inspection and approval of the completed
Once you obtain a permit you can commence with the work.
However, you must call for inspection before you cover or conceal
any work. If you are unsure of when to call for inspection, please
Customer Call Center to find out.
When the work is ready, request an inspection using one of three options:
Automated inspection requests may be made anytime (except between 2:00 a.m. and 3:00 a.m.). Requests made before 4:00 p.m. can be scheduled for the next business day. When calling for an inspection you will need to know the permit number, the site address, and type of inspection needed. To request an inspection for the next business day with one of our staff members, you must call in prior to 4:00 p.m. Automated inspection request systems will accept next day inspections prior to 4:00 p.m. We will attempt to contact you on the morning of the inspection.
For request of four (4) or more seismic gas shut off valve inspections, please complete the Seismic Gas ShutOff Valve Inspection Request Form. To schedule fewer than four (4) seismic gas shut off valve inspections, please call 3-1-1 for inside Los Angeles County or (213) 473-3231 for outside Los Angeles County.
To obtain inspection request for any permit via Internet click
To cancel or re-schedule an inspection, please contact our Customer
Call Center through the following numbers: 3-1-1 or (866) 4LA-CITY /
(866) 452-2489 (Within Los Angeles County) (213) 473-3231 (Outside
Los Angeles County) When calling, you will need to know the permit
number and the site address.
At the time of inspection, make sure the following are
available on-site: A copy of the permit Approved plans if plan check
(plan review) was required The Building Card issued at the time of
permit issuance (this is applicable to Building Permits only) Any
equipment needed to do the inspection such as a ladder.
A Certificate of Occupancy is issued pursuant to a building
permit for new construction, additions, and changes of occupancy
after all the necessary construction has been approved by the
inspector. It is evidence that the Department of Building and Safety
has determined that the construction was done according to the
requirements of the code for the given occupancy to be housed in the
“Online Extra Trip Payment” is a new service offered by LADBS
to provide its customers the capability to pay extra inspection trip
fees via the e-Permit system. For more information on
Extra Inspection trips, click here
Internet Request For Inspection
Select the inspection that most closely matches the type of
inspection you want to request. When in doubt, select the ‘rough … ’
inspection and place a message in the ‘Comments’ section.
Alternatively, you may contact the Customer Call Center by dialing
311 or (866) 4LA-CITY/(866) 452-2489 within L.A. County or (213)
473-3231 outside L.A. County
Yes. You may select as many inspection types as you have
choices. Please limit your selection(s) to work that is ready to be
Mistakes can be corrected on this page prior to clicking the
Continue button the first time by highlighting the area to be
corrected and retyping the information. Once Continue has been
pressed no changes can be made. For assistance, call the Customer
No, contact the Customer Call Center for assistance.
No. You must contact the inspector directly to request these
types of inspections. You may obtain the inspector’s telephone
number by contacting the Customer Call Center during business hours.
There are three reasons why you might get this error: 1) you
may not have a valid permit number, 2) your permit number is correct
but the permit has not been issued, or, 3) a ‘hold’ has been placed
on the permit. If you know your permit number is correct and feel
that you should be able to request an inspection and are unable to
do so, please contact the Customer Call Center for assistance.
The automated inspection request systems allow inspections to
be requested only three days in advance. Call the Customer Call
Center if you need to request an inspection more than three days in
You can request an inspection for the next business day as
long as the request is made before 4:00 p.m.
You can request an inspection for any permit, regardless of
whether it was obtained at an LADBS Construction Service Center or
on the Internet via e-Permit. Registration is not required to
request an inspection, however, if you are already logged in as an
e-Permit user, you do not have to log out to request an inspection.
Plan Check Related Questions
The following addresses plan check required by the Department of Building and Safety only. Other plan check, including plan check by other City departments, county and state agencies may also be required for the work being performed.
LADBS Codes link for detailed information regarding the codes we
Yes, if the house is one story and will be built from plans
based on the Department standard
"Wood Frame Prescriptive Provisions One Story Residential
Wood Frame Prescriptive Provisions One Story Residential
Construction Only is merely a representation of the
"Conventional Light Frame Construction" regulations found
in Chapter 23 of the Building Code. It includes the necessary
architectural and structural elements and construction details for
one story residential buildings that meet certain criteria. The
construction must be substantially of regular shape without
substantial offsets and without large openings in the walls for
doors or windows.
Generally speaking, any changes to Department approved plans
shall be approved by the plan check engineer who reviewed and issued
the permit. Sometimes, the changes can be handled over the counter
on the same day it is brought in; other times, the changes may need
to be resubmitted for further review with an additional plan check
fee. In either case, it is always a good idea to first call the plan
check engineer who issued the permit and ask for his/her help.
Plan check expires 18 months after the plan check fees are
paid. However, within 30 days of its expiration, an extension of
time to extend a permit application may be filed with the Department
Request for Modification of Building Ordinances . The request may be
filed with any Plan Check office, preferably with the office where
the plan was checked. A fee shall accompany each request.
For single family or duplex submittal, one set if the job is not in a hillside area, and two sets if it is.
For apartment or commercial project submittal, two sets of plans are required. If it is a Title 19 project, a third set is required for Fire Department review.
For residential project permit issuance, two sets of plans if the job is not in a hillside area, and three sets if it is.
For commercial project permit issuance, two sets of plans are
Customer Call Center .
Code Enforcement Related Questions
Building and Safety addresses issues for single family
residential, commercial, industrial and vacant buildings inside the
City of Los Angeles. We have an
Online Service Request or you can call Citywide Services at 311 to
request an investigation.
You can review the past and present activity on a particular
property with our free online
Property Activity Report . It shows both Permit activity and Code
If you receive an Order To Comply, read the entire order. Pay
particular attention to the compliance date, violations and your
appeal rights. Establish communication with the issuing Inspector.
If you do not understand something on the Order, ask the inspector
for further clarification. The Inspectors contact information is
located at the end of the Order.
Several options are available. Talk to your Inspector to
determine the best option for your particular situation.
Call the Inspector immediately to schedule an inspection to
avoid any non-compliance fees.
If you disagree on how the code is being applied to your
specific situation, discuss the matter with the Inspector or the
Inspectors immediate supervisor. If the issue is not resolved, you
have the right to Appeal to the Board of Building and Safety
Commissioners. Further information on Appeal rights are on the
Their could be many reasons why you received an Order. Do not
dismiss it as an error. Contact the issuing Inspector so the
necessary corrections, if needed, can be completed. This helps avoid
future fees and enforcement.
Building and Safety's Financial Services section should have
sent an invoice to the person(s) responsible for the fee. If you
believe you have fees due, contact the Inspector or the Inspectors
supervisor for confirmation.
The letter is sent out as a reminder that the recipiant of
the order is required to comply with the violations and call
the Inspector for an inspection before the compliance date on the
letter. If you can not comply by the date, call the Inspector for
further options specific to your situation.
Building Research Section Related Questions
Application form for a Los Angeles City Research Report is
available from the Los Angeles City Department of Building and
Safety (LADBS) web site. Click on the link to download the form.
Application for New General Approval or Technical Modification.
It takes approximately 8 to 10-weeks to complete the
evaluation of the product information and issue a Research Report
Approval Letter from the date the application for new research
report is received. The process to obtain a Los Angeles City
Research Report consists of the following steps:
a. Submit the following information to the Los Angeles City Department of Building and Safety Engineering Research Section: product literature describing how your product is to be used, substantiating data (i.e. test reports by approved 3rd party testing agency, engineering analysis), a completed application form for new LARR, along with a check in U.S. dollars drawn on a U.S. bank.
b. Once this information is received, your application package will be reviewed for completeness. If any deficiencies are determined, a letter will be sent to the applicant stating the deficiencies requiring correction.
c. After determining the application package is complete, the application will be logged in and assigned a log number and placed in line for review. It takes approximately 5 weeks for your application to be assigned to one of our engineers.
d. The substantiating data submitted will be evaluated to determine if it is at least the equivalent of the prescribed devise, material, or method of construction specified by the Los Angeles City Building Code in terms of quality, effective time period of fire resistance, strength, effectiveness, durability, and safety.
e. After reviewing the substantiating data the research engineer assigned to the application will write a letter stating their comments and the information needed to complete the evaluation, if necessary.
f. Upon resolution of all comments a draft copy of the Los Angeles City Research Report will be written. The draft copy of the Research Report will be e-mailed to the applicant for their review and comments.
g. After all comments from the applicant have been resolved, the Research Report will be submitted to the Chief of the Engineering Research Section for final review and approval. A signed copy of the Los Angeles City Research Report will be mailed to the applicant and will also be posted on the LADBS web site.
For expedite report review, see question below: How long does it take to obtain a Los Angeles City Research Report? Can the process be expedited?
The Code Date stated on a Research Report (upper right corner
on 1st page of Research Report) identifies which Los Angeles City
Building Code (LABC) the product covered in the research report is
approved for. Projects submitted to plan check prior to January 1,
2008 may be allowed to use the 2002 LABC. Projects submitted to plan
check between January 1, 2008 and December 31, 2010 must use the
2008 LABC. Projects submitted to plan check after January 1, 2011
must use the 2011 LABC.
A Research Report based on the 2008 Los Angeles City Building
Code (LABC) may only be used for projects allowed to be designed
under the 2008 LABC. Any new project submitted after January 1, 2011
must be designed under the 2011 LABC and would not be allowed to use
products approved by Research Report based on the 2008 LABC.
It takes approximately 5 weeks for your application to be
assigned to one of our engineers and an additional 3-5 weeks for the
evaluation to be completed, a draft copy of the research report to
be written, and the final copy of the research report signed. If the
substantiating data is incomplete, such as missing test reports,
testing not conducted by an approved testing agency, incomplete or
missing engineering calculations, etc, the time to obtain a Los
Angeles City Research Report may take longer.
Expedite report review is available pursuant to section 98.0422 of the Los Angeles City Municipal Code. The amount of the fee for this service is in addition to the normal review fee and is equal to one-half of the review fee. The expedite service will reduce the time to assign your application from approximately 5-weeks to 2- weeks and will reduce the review period from 3- 5-weeks to 3-weeks.
Section II of Information Bulletin P/BC-2011-119,
“Policy on Accepting Alternate Building Materials or Products”
describes the procedure for obtaining a one-time approval. Information
Bulletins are available on the internet. An Application for New
General Approval along with substantiating data and application fee
must be submitted to the Engineering Research Section prior to
considering a One Time Approval by the Los Angeles City Department
of Building and Safety (LADBS). The fee for a One Time Approval is
$174.90 plus $110.24 per hour spent to review the alternate material
or product and substantiating data with a two hour minimum fee
(Total fee of $395.38).
Complete form titled
Application for Renewal and Clerical Modification of General
Approval. Form and instructions
are available from our website. The fee for renewal (without
modifications) is $3,118.52 for City of Los Angeles Only Report and
$959.30 for Los Angeles City Research Report based on nationally
recognized model code Agency evaluation report. The Report is
approved for two years beyond the expiration date listed on the
expiring Research Report.
Company who has the legal rights to all testing used to
substantiate the product and the legal rights to the product to be
approved. Tests shall bear the name of the applicant, unless a
release letter accompanies the test report(s).
For General Approval – City of Los Angeles only:
Testing must be witnessed by a Los Angeles City, Department of Building and Safety (LADBS) approved testing agency independent of the Company requesting a Los Angeles City Research Report and the approved testing agency shall issue the test report. The approved testing agency must approve the testing facility where the testing occurs as meeting the requirements as specified in Information Bulleting IB-P/BC 2002-058 , Guidelines for Recognition of Testing Agencies.
For Research Reports based on a evaluation report from a nationally recognized model code agency:
The testing must be conducted under the supervision of an approved testing agency and the approved testing agency shall issue the test report. The approved testing agency shall take necessary steps to ensure that the integrity and condition of the test specimens is maintained and that the test specimens have not been altered during periods when a laboratory representative is not present. Also the manufacturer’s testing facility shall show to the satisfaction of the approved testing agency that it meets the requirements for an approved testing agency.
The Evaluation Report attached to the LARR must include the
2009 International Building Code listed under the section,
Evaluation Scope, “Compliance to the following codes” to be used
with the 2011 Los Angeles City Building Code. LARR based on an
Evaluation Report which list 2006 International Building Code (IBC)
and which does not include 2009 IBC may be used only for projects
permitted with the 2008 LABC.
If the updated Evaluation Report does not include additional
products or changes to the existing products and additional testing
or analysis was not required due to the change from 2006 IBC to 2009
IBC, you may file an Application
for Renewal to update your Los Angeles City Research Report. If
additional products or changes to the existing products have been
made or if additional testing or analysis was required due to the
change from 2006 IBC to 2009 IBC, you must file an Application
for Technical Modification.
The LARR which list the 2008 LABC may be used only for
projects permitted with the 2008 LABC. To update the LARR to the
2011 LABC, when there are no changes to the existing products and
additional testing or analysis is not required due to the change in
code requirements from the 2008 LABC to the 2011 LABC, you may file
for Renewal to update your Los Angeles City Research Report. If
additional products or changes to the existing products have been
made or if additional testing or analysis was required due to code
change from the 2008 LABC to 2011 LABC, you must file an Application
for Technical Modification.
Section III of Information Bulletin IB-P/BC-2008-119
specifies the qualifications necessary for nationally recognized
model code agencies to meet, for their evaluation reports to be used
as a basis for a Los Angeles City Research Report.
Currently evaluation reports from The International Code Council, Evaluation Services (ICC-ES) and The International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials Evaluation Service (IAPMO ES) may be used as a basis for a Los Angeles City Research Report.
The fee’s for a Technical Modification and Renewal are
$4,718.06 for City of Los Angeles Only Report and $2,878.96 for Los
Angeles City Research Report based on nationally recognized model
code Agency evaluation report. Also two forms must be completed;
Application for New General Approval or Technical Modification , and
Application for Renewal and Clerical Modification of General
Approval . The Report is approved for two years beyond the
expiration date listed on the expiring Research Report.
Zoning Related Questions
Code Manual and Commentary is a interpretation of the Zoning code.
It is a useful tool to answer more specific questions regarding
Click here for Zoning
A prevailing setback is a calculation used to determine
minimum distance construction can be from the front property line.
An online Prevailing
Setback Calculator is provided to assist in determining this complex
The requirements are different depending on factors such as
the zone of the lot and its location. For example, lots in hillside
areas are subject to different regulations when compared to the flat
areas of the City. Moreover, there are certain ordinances that
designate Specific Plan areas in the City that have their own set of
requirements. Please visit one of our
Customer Call Center for assistance.
Data and Records Related Questions
Request to Purchase 1) Building or Mechanical Permit Data
from the Plan Check Inspection System (PCIS), 2) Certificate of
Occupancy (CofO) for Building Permit Data from PCIS, 3) Code
Enforcement Cases or Customer Service Requests from the Code
Enforcement Information System (CEIS).
Click here to make a request
Administrative Related Questions
The City has established a toll free number 3-1-1 for the
public to dial into our
Customer Call Center . Its purpose is to serve as a single point of
contact into the Department. The Call Center has been in full
operation with fully trained staff during business hours .
Call volumes are recorded and can be monitored by supervisors for
quality control. An employee telephone directory is also available
on the "About Us" page of our Internet. However, you are
encouraged to dial toll free 3-1-1 or (866) 4LA-CITY/(866) 452-2489
for inside L.A. County or (213) 473-3231 for outside of L.A. County.
"One Call to City Hall" -- City of Los Angeles
established the 3-1-1 Call Center to serve as a single
point-of-entry into the City for our telephonic customers. Call
volumes are recorded and can be monitored by supervisors for quality
control. Once a call is transferred to the appropriate Building and
Safety office or staff member, the caller is free to get that number
and call it directly the next time if they choose. Otherwise, you
are encouraged to dial 3-1-1 or (866) 4LA-CITY/(866) 452-2489 for
inside Los Angeles County or 213-473-3231 for outside Los Angeles
Board of Building and Safety Commission Related Questions
The BBSC consists of five citizens appointed by the Mayor and
confirmed by the City Council. The BBSC is granted the authority, by
the Los Angeles Municipal Code (LAMC) and by the City Charter, to
hear many kinds of appeals related to Building ordinances such as
the types of cases listed below.
The BBSC is granted the authority by the Code and by the City Charter, to hear many kinds of appeals, including but not limited to the following:
• Appeals of the Department’s action regarding requests for slight modifications of the Building Ordinances and/or Code Violation Inspection Fee Ordinances, pursuant to the authority described in LAMC Section 98.0403.1(b) 1.
• Appeals from determinations, orders or actions of the Department pertaining to enforcement of specific ordinances, regulations or laws in individual cases, pursuant to LAMC Section 98.0403.1(b) 2 (i.e. error and abuse, except land use issues)
• Applications for import/export of soil pursuant to LAMC Section 91.7006.7.4.
• “Quasi-Judicial” proceedings pursuant to Division 89 of the LAMC (NOID, PNH)
• Adoption of Building, Electrical, Mechanical, Plumbing, HVAC, etc Ordinances
• The BBSC does not hear cases related to land use
ordinances. These cases shall be heard by the Department of City
Planning in accordance with Section 12.26K of the Los Angeles
Generally, an appeal to the BBSC is scheduled for a hearing date within thirty days of receipt of the appeal to the BBSC. This time period will be extended in cases that require additional documentation and or research.
In the case of import/export applications, the
scheduled hearing date is contingent upon receipt of the appropriate
environmental clearance from the Department of City Planning (i.e.
Categorical Exemption, Mitigated Negative Declaration, or
Environmental Impact Report) AND responses from the
Department of Transportation and the Department of Public Works.
Notices for all cases on an upcoming hearing are mailed out
to interested parties and/or the owner approximately ten days prior
to the date of the hearing. For more information regarding a
specific application or appeal, contact the Commission Office at
(213) 482-0466. Also, you may visit www.ladbs.org
for the status of Import/Export (Haul Route) cases submitted to the
LAMC requires that notices are sent to other property owners
that may be affected by the request when an appeal request is
submitted to the BBSC. You may attend the hearing and are allowed to
speak on any case on the agenda by completing a speaker card on the
day of the hearing.
An import/export approval is valid for twelve
months from the date of the Board’s action. The BBSC does not grant
extensions on import/export applications. If you fail to obtain your
grading permit within the twelve month period, the application will
become expired and a new application must be submitted to the
Commission Office to be heard before the BBSC.
Whenever an application for import/export is approved by the
BBSC, any interested party may appeal the decision to the CITY
COUNCIL within ten calendar days of the Board’s action. The appeal
must be filed at the Office of City Clerk any time prior to 5:00
p.m. on the final day of the ten day appeal period.
Members of the public may address the BBSC during the
appropriate time scheduled on the agenda (usually at the end of the
hearing); however, the BBSC will not take any action on an item that
is not on the current agenda.
a. 1) The Appeal processing Fee is $130.00 for the first item plus $39.00 for each additional item and a 6% surcharge. Additional fees may be added for research ($104.00/hour) and inspection ($84.00/hour) and 2) The Board Fee is based on Table 4-A (found in LAMC Section 98.0403.2) (see Table 4-A below). The cost to file the appeal consists of the appeal processing fee and the Board fee combined.
b. Applications for import/export have a filing fee of $529.00 for the first 1000 cubic yards and $100.00 additional for each 1000 cubic yards or portion of 1000 cubic yards, plus surcharges (17% + $10.00).
c. Department of City Planning Case applications have an Appeal processing fee of $130.00 with a 6% surcharge. Additional fees may be added for research ($104.00/hour) and inspection ($84.00/hour).
FILING FEES * FOR APPEALS
FIRST ITEM FOR SINGLE BUILDING TYPE OF BUILDING **
Each Additional Item
IV and II-N
I and II EXCEPT II-N
R-3 and U
A,B,E,F,H,I,M,S and R-1 and R-2
|All other filing fees not covered in the above schedule including appeals pursuant to Los Angeles Municipal Code Section 12.26, shall be $500.00 for the first item and $150.00 for each additional item.|
* See Section 91.105.4 for fees for referral to the Sign Advisory Committee.
** Accessory building, structures or appendages will be considered the same as main building and occupancy.
Building and Safety
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questions will be displayed over these directions. Click on the
question to reveal the answer.
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