Withdraw your application – Planning disputes

If you want to withdraw your planning dispute at VCAT, find out what to do and what happens next.

When you withdraw your application

When you withdraw your application about a planning dispute at VCAT, the effect is the same as if you hadn’t submitted your application.

What happens when you withdraw your application will depend on what your planning dispute is about.

Application type When you withdraw
To review the decision by a responsible authority about a planning permit application The original decision will stand. A planning permit will or will not be issued according to that original decision
To review the decision of a responsible authority to include particular conditions on a planning permit The original conditions will still stand
For VCAT to make a decision about a planning permit application if the responsible authority has not made a decision within the required time Then no planning permit will be issued. Failure to decide is considered the same as a refusal to issue a permit
For an enforcement order about the use or development of land The use and development of the land might continue in the same way as it had been previously
To cancel or amend a planning permit The planning permit will continue to operate in the same way as it had been before
To seek a declaration We will not make a statement or determination about the fact or legal issue that your application was about

You need to ask us if you want to withdraw an application. To do this, complete the form to apply to withdraw, or send us an email.

If you settle

Sometimes everyone involved in the case comes to an agreement about the planning dispute.

If all parties agree to settle the case you can ask for a consent order instead of withdrawing your application.

If this happens, you can ask VCAT to make an order to settle the dispute on the terms that you have agreed with the other parties. To do this, you need to submit a consent order. If you get a consent order then you may not need to attend a final hearing.

You should not withdraw your application. If you do withdraw your application then VCAT cannot make an order on the terms that you have agreed with the other parties. This will put all parties back in the same position as if the application had not been made.

Find out more about consent orders

How to withdraw your application

You need to get permission (also called ‘leave’) from VCAT to withdraw your application.

You also need to write to all of the other parties in the planning dispute to let them know that you want to withdraw your application.

We can make an order that you must pay all or part of the costs that the other parties have had to pay to respond to your application.

If you have agreed with the other parties that you will not pay any of their costs then you must provide us with written proof of that agreement. Send this to us when you ask to withdraw your application.

You can’t make another application about the same facts and circumstances without getting permission from VCAT first.

If we don’t know why you’re withdrawing your application

We might contact you to make sure that you understand what will happen if you withdraw your application.

We might also ask you to attend a practice day hearing to find out more about why you are asking to withdraw your application.

When an objector withdraws their application

Planning disputes may involve objectors. An objector can lodge a statement of grounds to say that they want to take part in a hearing.

If an objector withdraws their statement of grounds, they are no longer involved in the planning dispute. The dispute will still come to VCAT for consideration.

An objector may withdraw their objection if they come to an agreement with the permit applicant.

If this happens, the planning dispute will still come to VCAT so we can make a decision on the dispute. Our decision may not reflect the agreement between the permit applicant and the objector who has withdrawn.

If there is more than one application, and only one application is withdrawn

Sometimes more than one party will dispute a decision to approve a planning permit application.

If a number of parties apply to dispute the same planning permit decision, we consider each of those parties as a separate application. We give them the same VCAT reference or file number.

If one applicant withdraws their application, this does not affect the other parties. They will continue to have their applications processed by VCAT.

An objector and a permit applicant may both make separate applications about conditions imposed on a permit. We give these applications different reference or file numbers, even though their disputes are about the same permit.

If the objector withdraws their application, we will continue to process the application by the permit applicant.

Related pages

When VCAT opens a case – Planning disputes

Find out what happens when you apply to come to VCAT for a planning dispute.

Consent orders in planning cases

If you are involved in a planning dispute you can ask for a consent order to confirm an agreement between you and the other parties.

How VCAT makes decisions in planning cases

Understand how we come to a decision when we hear a planning case at VCAT.