Code Modification

Requesting a Code Modification

When there are practical difficulties involved in meeting the provisions of the code, an owner or owner's agent may request in writing a code modification to any of the provisions of the USBC provided the spirit and intent of the code are observed and public health, safety, and welfare are assured. Only the Building Official has authority to grant modifications.

Code modifications are not intended to permit setting aside or ignoring a code provision and do not extend to actions that are necessary to correct code violations.

Applications for a code modification must be in writing and provide the special individual reason(s) that makes strict compliance impractical and demonstrate that the intent of the code is accomplished. The expense of correcting a code violation does not constitute a practical difficulty suitable for a modification.

To request a code modification, you must complete the Code Modification Request Form (PDF) and submit the form to at the Department of Development and Permits. There is no fee for submitting a code modification request.

If the modification request is denied, you have the right to appeal the decision to the City of Chesapeake Board of Building Code Appeals. Appeals require a $200 fee and must be filed with the department within 30 days of the receipt of the decision being appealed.