As part of the Department of Building’s recent efforts to streamline and expedite the building permit process, it made some important changes to the Post-Approval Amendments (PAA) process in 2006. Previously, all amendments to Schedule B needed a PAA to be filed, but now “minor variations” to fixture counts don’t need anything filed.
According to the DOB, a minor variation falls under the following categories:
1) Relocating a fixture within ten feet of its original location on approved plans, provided it remains in the same room.
2) Relocating or replacing up to 30 existing sprinklerheads that have been filed under sprinkler (SP) or Sprinkler (PL) work types
3) Roughing in to accommodate fixture differences where plumbing fixtures will be placed in approved plans.
So, in theory, you could replace a toilet and a shower, yet never have to file for a PAA! Pretty nice! However, there’s a catch. A building can only have a certain maximum number of “minor variations,” after which point a PAA is again required. A residential space may have up to 2 minor variations to fixtures per dwelling unit, and a commercial space may have up to 2 minor variations. Once this number is exceeded, a PAA must be filed.