Section 6 of the Party Walls Act includes nearby excavations. In practice, this means that even if you dig within your own borders, the law recognizes that there is a potential risk to your neighbour`s foundations. To enter the scope of the law, you must dig up within 3 meters of your neighbor`s foundations and under their base (this one is increased to 6 meters if your foundations are particularly deep – like the stacked foundations. B, for example). They are surprised to learn that there are no penalties for such behaviour and their only remedy to seek an injunction from the court. Getting an injunction seems to be an extreme measure for most neighbors – advance fees are prohibitive in many cases, and often, when a neighbor talks to a lawyer, it`s too late anyway because the certified work is finished. If you and your neighbour can`t agree on the work on the party wall, you must appoint a certified expert. You can approve the expert proposed by the contractor, but that surveyor must be an agreed surveyor, who works impartially and independently in the best interests of both parties to resolve the dispute. It should not be the same surveyor that the owner uses for his own works. The dispute resolution process also begins if you do not respond to the notification within the specified time frame. If you do not respond within 14 days, you will receive a follow-up message in which you will have 10 days to respond.
If this is ignored, your neighbour may order a surveyor to act on your behalf. If you don`t name your own expert, your neighbour can name you on your behalf. You can use this letter from the HomeOwners Alliance to send it to your neighbors. The courts have not taken into account the owners who continue to work without notice and damage a neighbour`s property. In one notable case, known as Roadrunner Properties Limited v. John Dean, the judge stated that the owner should not be given any advantage because he did not meet the legal requirements. In this context, he decided that the contractor should be responsible for rebutting a link between injury and work, rather than the other way around, which would be the normal position in the common law. When the Party Walls Act came into force more than 20 years ago, the idea was that it would provide a platform for neighbors to solve problems related to construction work or digging foundations that would affect party walls.
6. My neighbour did not respond to my communication, so I am free to start working. For more advice on party walls, any questions you have about getting a message on the party wall or appointing a surveyor, contact allcott Associates today to resolve your party conflict. If you do not wish to use an Agreed Surveyor acting on behalf of both parties, it is also possible to contradict the opinion and appoint your own expert, while your neighbour also appoints his own surveyor. It should be noted that the owner is also responsible for the cost of your surveyor. If you receive a party breakup notice, you have 14 days to respond with a series of options: give your neighbor the details of the Party Wall Act so they know what they agree to – downloading the explanation from the Party Wall Act planning portal is the best way around that.