Although the question of where the shore is seems to be something intuitive, a precise definition can be found in Polish law. In accordance with art. 220 of the “Law of July 20, 2017 – Water Law”, the shoreline of natural watercourses, lakes and other natural water bodies is:
The only exception is for regulated shores. In their case, the shore line runs along the line connecting the outer edges of regulatory structures, and in the case of willow plantations on land obtained as a result of regulation – the border of plantations on the land side.
Yes land with coastline it is not precisely established, it is worth taking care of it. Having a fixed shore, you can be sure which part of the plot can be managed freely and which is subject to certain restrictions. To obtain a decision on the determination of the coastline, a request must be sent to:
- in the case of the waters of the inland sea and the waters of the territorial sea – the competent body of the local maritime administration,
- for natural watercourses, lakes and other natural water reservoirs with continuous or periodic natural flow of surface water – the Minister responsible for water management.
In addition to the request for determination of the coastline, the person concerned must provide:
- design of the demarcation of land covered with water from adjacent land prepared by a surveyor,
- proof of payment of stamp duty,
- if the applicant is acting through an agent, a copy of the power of attorney.
The decision on the determination of the bank is received by the applicant and the owners or entities whose adjacent land is disclosed in the land register.
Public waters and own reservoir
The Baltic Sea, as well as a significant part of the rivers and lakes, is the property of the State Treasury. Therefore, the rules for the use of public waters apply around them, which are regulated by the law of July 20, 2017 – water law. If land with a bank borders a lake, a river or another body of water in the public domain, its owner must comply with the applicable regulations.
However, there are also a small number of private lakes or reservoirs. In accordance with art. 214 of the aforementioned law, unfilled interior stagnant water within the framework of water services is the property of the owner of the property.
Land with coastline and fence
Although the vision of a private beach may offer land with coastlineit’s tempting in accordance with art. 232 of the Law of July 20, 2017 – Water Law, it is forbidden to fence land adjacent to public waters at a distance of less than 1.5 from the shore. In addition, you cannot prohibit or prevent passage through this zone. Therefore, erecting a fence in this part of the plot is against the law.
The legislator underlines in art. 32 of the aforementioned law, that everyone has the right to universal use of public internal surface waters, the waters of the internal sea and the waters of the territorial sea. It also explains the concept of “common use” which refers to the satisfaction of personal, domestic or agricultural needs, recreation, tourism, water sports and recreational fishing.
This does not mean that the owner of the plot must allow other people to stay on his premises, although it is not possible to prohibit or prevent people from crossing it. Moreover, in accordance with art. 233 of the aforementioned law, the owner of waterfront land is required to provide access to water for the purposes of carrying out work relating to the maintenance of the waters and the installation of maritime marks or measuring devices. hydrology and meteorology.
Can you build on the shore?
The erection of a building or platform near the shore should not be difficult to cross the site or to access for the purposes of works and other necessary activities. However, it must be taken into account that a plot with a bank may be subject to flooding. This type of information should be sought in the provisions of the local spatial plan (MPZP) and the voivode’s ordinances on the creation of landscape parks or other protected landscape areas.
If the local development plan has not been adopted in a given area, it is necessary to request a decision on the conditions of construction and land use planning. Depending on the classification of the site, its construction will be possible or prohibited. It should be remembered that regardless of site qualification, the necessary construction procedures must be followed prior to construction. For example, in the case of a jetty, this will be an application for construction, obtaining a water permit and entering into an underwater land use agreement.
What are the consequences of fencing the plot?
As can be seen from our guide, in accordance with the content of art. 478 of the Law of July 20, 2017 – Water Law, fencing land at a distance of less than 1.5 m from the shore or prohibiting or preventing passage may result in a fine of up to PLN 5,000. zloty. However, in practice, this is a dead recipe. A low criminal record and a one-year statute of limitations for an act means that many people don’t care and are willing to fence off and take over commonly used areas.