The Regulatory Policy and Administration division reviews vested rights petitions submitted under Land Development Code Chapter 25-1, Article 12, and Chapter 245 of the Texas Local Government Code. 

Under certain conditions, state law affords a permit applicant a “vested right” to have an application reviewed under older regulations that are no longer in effect. Vested rights, sometimes referred to as “grandfathering,” apply only to a project, not to a property. Vested rights claims are generally based on one or more prior applications that provided fair notice of a continuing development project that began before the adoption of current regulations.

A Vested Rights Petition should be submitted prior to a Site Plan or a Subdivision application. 


How to Apply


 step 1  Complete Petition

Visit the Forms & Applications webpage and select the forms based on application type.

  • For Subdivision complete the Vested Rights petition, Project Review Form, and DP-02 Development Plan Application 
  • For Site Plan complete the Vested Rights petition, Project Review Form, and DP-01 Development Plan Application 

A Vested Rights Petition must, at a minimum, include a Copy of the Original Application that is the basis of the vested rights claim, which may be one of the following:  Site Plan, Preliminary Plan, Final Plat, Zoning Site Plan, Waterway Development Permit, Service Extension Request or other.


step 2  Submit Online 

Submit your application online with the Land Use Review web form


step 3  Review

Staff reviews the information necessary to determine whether the application is entitled to vested rights.


step 4  Determination 

Within 10 business days, a Vested Rights Determination is issued approving or denying the petition



*Vested Rights petitions can also be submitted with a Site Plan application. However, it is recommended that the Vested Rights petition is done in advance. If a Vested Rights Petition is included with an application, the Vested Rights review and determination are completed during Completeness Check. Until the Vested Rights determination is issued, the other technical review groups cannot review for completeness check. An application must be deemed complete within 45 calendar days of the Completeness Check application in order to clear the Completeness Check and formally submit plans for review. Otherwise, the application expires.