Smart Planning filed a claim against GLS Architects International Ltd for plagiarising their Heritage Statement dated 2016. It was noticed that the same Heritage Statement for the same address had been used by GLS Architects International limited in 2021.
The Managing Director of Smart Planning, presented the evidence to the Judge presiding over the claim. He stated despite the Work in Progress Report totalling £3,645 for entries specific to the work on the Heritage Statement, as a gesture of good will, the amount Smart Planning wish to claim back for costs of use of their copyrighted Heritage Statement is £2,400, plus the claim fee. The Managing Director also confirmed Smart Planning retains the copyright for all reports, documents, plans, graphics and other information produced by Smart Planning Ltd as stated in their terms.
The Judge stated that it is clearly substantially the same document containing de minimis amendments. She added the Managing Director had pointed out the Heritage Statement was written by Smart Planning in 2016 using the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) 2012 revision. The NPPF was amended in 2021 and if GLS Architects International Ltd had written the Heritage Statement themselves, they would have needed to refer to the NPPF reiteration of 2021, but the 2012 paragraphs remained in the document.
The Judge awarded the claim, plus costs of the claim and Hearing fee, totalling £2,696.