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Planning permission in France : sample letter

Here is a suggested sample letter for contesting planning permission using a recours gracieux (letter to the mairie).

You should use ordinary paper and the letter can be typed or handwritten, but should be hand signed.

You will need to obtain from the planning notice displayed at the site details including the reference code of the planning permission, the date of the planning permission decision and the address of the property.

You will also need to prepare a few lines explaining your reasons for objecting.

You could use an automatic translator such as to assist if necessary but if so you should to ask a French-speaking friend to double check your text if in doubt.


Sample letter (provided by the French prime minister’s office).

Monsieur / Madame [delete Monsieur or Madame as applicable] le Maire

Je vous informe que je souhaite exercer un recours aux fins de l'annulation de votre décision [référence] du [date] accordant une autorisation d'urbanisme à mon voisin, M./Mme [nom] , sur le terrain situé [adresse] pour les raisons suivantes [préciser les motifs sur lesquels repose la demande de retrait du permis de construire, d'aménager ou de démolir] .

Je vous prie d'agréer l'expression de mes salutations distinguées.


Translation [for information and obviously not to be sent]


I am writing to inform you that I wish to exercise my right of appeal with a view to cancelling your decision [insert planning permission reference code] of [insert date of planning permission] granting planning permission to my neighbour Mr/Ms [delete as applicable and insert surname] on the land located at [insert address] for the following reasons.

[Insert reasons for your opposition].

Yours faithfully

[your signature]

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