General Permit Information

The Building Division's mission is to provide for safety and welfare in the built environment. Prior to commencing construction, a contractor or owner/builder must first make application to obtain a permit. Obtaining a permit may require the interaction and approval of several agencies outside of the Building Division, and with small exception, there are fees charged by each of these agencies for their review procedures. The Building Division works to coordinate the involvement of these other agencies in the permitting process to obtain a building permit in the most expedient manner while maintaining the County’s high level of quality. This service should not be viewed as a substitute for a customer’s responsibility to interact with each of the various agencies.

Application for approval from Fire Rescue, Zoning Division, Addressing and Landscaping normally occur in the building permit process. However, design reviews may be secured prior to permit application from Fire Rescue and Building Code Review. Applicants may apply to many of the outside agencies independently, prior to applying for a building permit, and are strongly advised to do so, when applicable. Not all agencies are required by statute to adhere to strict processing timelines in a manner similar to the Building Division. Documents required for approval by other agencies may not be the same, or as complex, as those required for Building Code review.

Receipt of a building permit may not indicate approval from all agencies having jurisdiction (ex: Water Management or Special Districts), compliance with deed restrictions, or adherence to homeowners or other association rules. The applicant is responsible for compliance with these and any other agency requirements outside of the Building Permit process.

The other agencies that are tracked by the computerized network of the Building Division, and are most commonly involved in the permit process include, but are not limited to:

Palm Beach County Zoning Division,
Palm Beach County Fire Rescue,
Palm Beach County Environmental Resources Management Department,
Palm Beach County Health Department,
Palm Beach County Addressing Section,
Palm Beach County Landscaping Section, and
Palm Beach County Land Development Division.
Depending upon the location and use of the proposed improvement, the following agencies may also be involved in the processing of a permit:
Palm Beach County Department of Airports,
Palm Beach County Planning Division,
Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Hotels and Restaurant Section,
Florida Department of Environmental Protection,
United States Army Corp of Engineers, and
Florida Inland Navigation District.

Please see the section titled "Other Regulatory Agency Contact Information," for a means of contacting these various agencies, and gain information on the agency’s fees and program jurisdictions.

Permit applications should generally be submitted in two identical sets, assembled with the larger sheets on the bottom, and progressing to the smallest sheets on the top. Three sets are required for those applications within the municipalities where Palm Beach County has entered into and Interlocal Agreement to perform permitting and inspection services. Three sets are also required for the initial submittal when applying for the "Master Permit Program" (repetitious permitting of the same model).

At the time of application, a brief intake evaluation will be performed, establishing the permit type (scope of work) and utilizing an application sufficiency checklist. The customer will be given a receipt for application. This receipt will include details of the application including the P.R. (tracking) Number, and the amount required to be paid for the permit application review. Payment of the review fee is required before the application process can begin. Keep this receipt! You will be required to present the receipt to pick up your final permit, and you will need the P.R. to check status and refer to your application. The applicant will be contacted if any deficiencies are found during the review process, and when the permit is ready to be picked up. Refer to the section on permit types and application sufficiency checklists. The more complete and accurate the permit application, the more expeditiously an application review and building permit issuance can be achieved.