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State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection

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Freshwater Wetlands - Application Guidance
Malfunctioning Individual Subsurface Sewage
Disposal (Septic) Systems (General Permit 25)

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  • Application Guidance
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  • FAQ

General Permit 25—Malfunctioning individual subsurface sewage disposal (septic) system

When, it is necessary to authorize activities in freshwater wetlands and transition areas, for the repair or modification of a malfunctioning individual subsurface sewage disposal (septic) system, then a General Permit 25 is required.

General Permit 25 does not authorize activities in State open waters.

In order to determine whether or not an area of freshwater wetlands, transition areas or State open waters may be disturbed by any proposed activity, detailed information about that wetlands and the site must be obtained, and an inspection of the property by a representative of the Department is required. The Department offers a “Letter of Interpretation" (LOI), which is a document that may describe if there are wetlands on the property, and if so, where they are located.

The public can now apply on-line for a GP-25 for the replacement of a malfunctioning septic system.

This page is for informational purposes only. Please see N.J.A.C. 7:7A-5.25 for the precise rules concerning this General Permit.

The following criteria are required to qualify for a General Permit #25:

  • It must be an "Individual subsurface sewage disposal system".
  • It must be "Malfunctioning" i.e. not functioning to treat sewages as it was designed.
  • May not disturbe more then 1/4 acre of freshwater wetlands and/or transition areas combined.
  • Must be located on the same property where the malfunctioning system is located.
  • May not be part of or be used for an expansion of the existing facility.

Getting a GP25: If you believe that your project will require a GP25, and you do not know how to apply for one, we suggest that you visit "The Permit Process" section of this website for more information. It will give you a general overview on the ins and outs of permitting, and will direct you to the forms necessary to apply. Please be advised that any application submitted must follow the procedures and information requireme. If you intend on applying for multiple freshwater wetland general permits, be advised that there are strict limits on what can and cannot be applied for, with a 1 acre cap on wetland disturbance for any one project site.

All freshwater wetland general permits must comply with all applicable requirements at N.J.A.C. 7:7A-4.3, Conditions that apply to all general permits, and N.J.A.C. 7:7A-13.2, Establishing permit conditions.

Note: The Department has, for your convenience, developed an Application Checklist for General Permit 25. Please follow carefully the requirements as outlined on this checklist to insure that you have all of the required information necessary to complete and process your application.

A direct link to the rules cited in our standard approval letter under "Permit Conditions" for this General Permit can be found below.

7:7A-5.25 General permit 25 - Malfunctioning Individual Subsurface Sewage Disposal (Septic) Systems

7:7A-4.3 Conditions that apply to all general permit authorizations

7:7A-13.1 Standard conditions that apply to all permits

7:7A - Index to the entire rule.

Please Note: The Department has made every effort to ensure that the text of this regulation is identical to the official, legally effective version set forth in the New Jersey Register. However, should there be any discrepancies between the text on this web site and the official version of the rule, the official version will govern. For more information on obtaining official versions of the rules, How To Get a Paper Copy of Department Rules

Frequently Asked Questions

If you do not see an answer to your question below, please use the Land Use Contact form on this website. We will make every attempt to answer your question as promptly as possible.

Q. When do I need to obtain a Freshwater Wetland General Permit 25?

A. When the proposed activity will disturb wetlands and/or transition areas for a septic system repair or modification.

Q. Can I increase the number of bedrooms in my house and get a GP 25 for a larger capacity septic system?

A. No. There is no expansion allowed in order to qualify for a General Permit 25.

Q. Can I apply for a permit via the Internet?

A. Yes, if you go to “” and follow the instruction you may apply for a General Permit 25.

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Last Updated: January 4, 2016