The Territorial Defense Agency (ADT) has fined me for committing an urban development violation. Am I eligible for a discount?

The Territorial Defense Agency of Mallorca (ADT) is an autonomous body of the Consell Insular de Mallorca (CIM), whose purpose is to exercise the island’s and/or municipal powers delegated in matters of urban development law enforcement on rural land on the island of Mallorca according to Article 166 of the current Law 12/2017 of December 29, of Urban Development of the Balearic Islands (LUIB).

In the case of municipalities, municipal powers may be voluntarily conferred to the ADT through the relevant delegation agreements between the ADT and the various local authorities.

Therefore, the ADT can take action to detect urban development violations on rural land, both on its own initiative under the urban development powers of the Consell Insular de Mallorca itself, as well as by municipal delegation pursuant to the various agreements it has signed with the relevant city governments. 

The commission of an urban development violation will always result in a fine, even when unauthorized works have been made legal.

The amount of the fines will always depend on the type of violation committed by the offender since, according to Law 12/2017, in most cases, the penalties will be calculated based on a specific percentage of the value of the completed works.

When processing the penalty dossier, the ADT is governed by the procedure set forth in Decree 14/1994 dated February 10, which approves the Regulations on the procedure to be followed when exercising the authority to impose fines.

Once the alleged offender has been notified of the decision to initiate a penalty dossier, they shall have fifteen days to file a written statement of arguments with the ADT in response to the decision to initiate the dossier. Once the interested party has filed arguments, the case officer will draw up the Resolution Proposal, granting a new fifteen-day period for the interested party to file a new argument as they deem appropriate.

Once this second written statement of arguments has been rejected, the ADT will then issue the relevant resolution of the penalty dossier, imposing the appropriate fine in accordance with the classification and calculation made during the administrative processing of the dossier.

At this point, the following question arises:

Is it possible to apply a discount to the fine imposed while the penalty dossier is being processed?

Once the offender has been notified of the Resolution initiating the penalty dossier, they may avail themselves of a series of choices regarding acknowledging and paying the fine. In fact, the reduction that may be applicable will depend on the choice made.

The following discounts are possible:

  • In the first case, there is voluntary acknowledgment of liability and express waiver of any legal action or appeal against the fine, which will result in a 20% discount of the fine.

If the acknowledgement is accompanied by payment in the case above, the discount will be 40%, so that only 60% of the fine will be paid.

In these two cases, the discount is granted regardless of whether any unauthorized works have been legalized or restored.

  • When it comes to legalization, referring to those cases in which the works do not comply with urban development regulations, the fine will be discounted 95% if legalization is requested and obtained within the period granted by the authorities (2 months).

The discount will be 80% if the legalization is requested after the aforementioned 2 month period has elapsed but before the resolution ordering that which has been altered to be restored.

  • There will be a 90% discount if that which has been altered is restored before the resolution has been issued.

If what has been altered is restored after the resolution has been issued, but within the voluntary period, the discount will be 80%.

In short, these regulations follow the model of favoring, encouraging, and promoting legalization whenever possible and restoring what has been altered when legalization is not possible, establishing considerable discounts on the penalties initially imposed.

This is a clear trend towards legalization and restoring illegal works.