How to Submit Additional Information

An additional information request is sent by Licenses and Inspections whenever one of their plans examiners wants to know more about your project.  Getting this letter is not an indication of failure, it is actually considered a standard response as requirements for permits can be as unpredictable as the weather. However, in the off chance you do not receive a request for additional information, you deserve multiple cookies.


How to Correctly Assemble an Additional Information Package


Include a Cover Letter


Every time we submit additional information on behalf of one of our clients we include a cover letter identifying the: plans examiner, the project application number, and the property address.  THIS IS A MUST.  IF YOU DO NOT INCLUDE A COVER LETTER, YOUR PACKAGE GETS TOSSED INTO THE L&I ABYSS, GONE FOREVER.


Example of a Cover Letter

Write a Letter to the Plans Examiner


Once you have composed all the documents you need to submit, print out a cover letter like the one shown above and then write a letter to the examiner. Address each point laid out in the request so that the examiner knows you have submitted a complete package. Also, include any information you think might be helpful or important to the examiner’s review of your application. Finally, sign the letter with your name, email, and phone number.


Make sure you provide the contact information of the person who is in charge of managing the progress of the application. Things get confusing when communication is issued to someone else who is not directly responsible for managing the city and its communications.



Where to Submit the Additional Information



Every submission goes to the same place: The basement of 1401 JFK Blvd. Department of Licenses and Inspections. You do not need to wait in any lines or pull any tickets to submit your additional information.  You deposit your package into the bin marked ‘Building and Zoning Additional Information’. You must sign the log sheet located on the table.


Snap a photo of your package in the bin and also take a picture of the log. Save the photos for your records.  It’s always good to be able to back yourself up if you need to; to the city, your clients, etc.






MAJOR KEY: You can only submit your additional information via the bin!



DO NOT submit your additional information via email, carrier pigeon, or any other way you think you may be able to. Unless explicitly stated otherwise, you must drop it in the additional information bin. Some plans examiners allow you to send them something via email, but this is in rare cases, and is only usually allowed if there is one small piece of information you are supplying. In our experience, it is best to drop any and all extra information in the bucket in the appropriate fashion as described in this post. We have seen a plans examiner literally toss additional information packages aside because the cover letter was not clear on the outside of the package. And we have had to step in to manage projects because a client thought they could send the information via email, and then was upset when they never got a response. There is one very specific way to do it, and you might as well do it right the first time.



If you still deem this a waste of your time or to be more of a headache than you wish to bear, feel free to reach out to us. We can quarterback the additional information and remainder of your application for you.

Philly Zoning Team

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