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Round table “Unauthorized Construction: Criteria, Legalization, and Judicial Practice”


On May 14, the round table “Unauthorized Construction: Criteria, Legalization, and Judicial Practice” organized by the Real Estate Committee was held at the AEB Conference Center. 

The meeting was moderated by the Committee Chairman Anton Alekseev, EPAM Law Offices.

The series of expert presentations was opened by Vladislav Soloviev from ALRUD, who presented as the discussion starting point a list of unauthorized construction criteria according to the RF Civil Code (which objects can and cannot be considered as unauthorized structures), as well as the existing approaches of courts to identifying these criteria by the examples of particular cases. 

Dmitry Bogdanov, Counsel at SEAMLESS Legal, studied the semantic and legal separation of the concepts of “reconstruction”, “major repair” of capital construction objects, “redevelopment” and “rearrangement” of premises in residential and non-residential buildings, in accordance with the Urban Development and the Housing Codes of the Russian Federation. He drew the audience's attention to the differences in the procedures for project design and approval, registration and record keeping, following from this distinction, along with the consequences of non-compliance with the procedures established for each of these types of changes to an object.

The practical issues of legalization of unauthorized constructions through out-of-court and court procedures, of jurisdiction of such cases and peculiarities of judicial proceedings based on the existing practice in Moscow were discussed by Ivan Gritsenko, Senior Counsel at Denuo. As an illustration, the expert gave examples of successful and unsuccessful challenges to the inclusion of objects in the list of potential unauthorized constructions (in Annex No. 2 of the Moscow City Government Resolution No. 819-PP dated 11.12.2013).

Following the topic of judicial consideration of such disputes, Ekaterina Karunets from Melling, Voitishkin & Partners spoke about the specifics of determining the boundaries of the limitation period: the general rule (including the issue of determining the moment when the limitation period begins to run) and the exceptions in which the limitation period does not apply to demolition claims.

Finally, Anna Savkunova, Senior Associate at Nextons, shared information on what has changed in the approach to unauthorized construction issues with the release of Resolution No. 44 of the Plenum of the RF Supreme Court in December 2023. Anna spoke about the introduced clarifications and amendments based on the current practice, including the issues of violation severity, actions in the absence of a construction permit, recognition of ownership rights, and others.

Speakers' reports were supported by joint expert debates on the issues under consideration, with discussion and comments on specific cases submitted from the audience. 

Materials of the roundtable are available from the Real Estate Committee coordinator upon request.