18.05.2023 Business law

Heavy fines for not having an EPC difficult to enforce

On 28 April 2023, the regulations imposing a legal requirement to provide an energy performance certificate (EPC) for a building or residential property when you rent out or sell it under penalty of a fine came into force. However, the amendment to the Act on the Energy Performance of Buildings does not specify how those penalties are to be enforced. Will we actually pay a fine for not having an EPC?

What is an Energy Performance Certificate?

As we previously wrote, an energy performance certificate contains data and energy efficiency factors of a property, stating a total energy demand necessary for their intended use.  The amendment to the Act introduced the obligation to have an EPC when you rent out or sell a building or its part.  The seller or landlord is obliged to provide  the buyer or tenant with a certificate at the conclusion of the sales contract or rental agreement.

Can a notary refuse to sign a contract in the absence of an energy certificate?

Under the first version of the draft amendment to the Act, notaries were obliged to refuse to execute a notary’s deed in the absence of an EPC. In the version that has recently entered into force, the notary is only required to instruct the seller/landlord of the requirement to hand over the EPC and a fine for failure to do so.

Does the lack of EPC actually result in a fine?

In an article for Muratorplus.pl, Grzegorz Witczak, advocate, Director of the Commercial Law and Property Department of TGC Corporate Lawyers, explains the problem of sanctions for the failure to provide an EPC. Our expert also assesses whether the threat of incurring a fine actually motivates sellers/tenants to draw up and provide an EPC when selling or renting out a property. 

The article is available in Polish only.

Grzegorz Witczak Director of the Commercial Law and Property Department
TGC Corporate Lawyers
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