Mar 26

Dispute over Party Wall Agreement

Dispute Over Party Wall Agreement: What You Need to Know

A party wall is a common wall separating two adjoining properties. It is typically found in semi-detached and terraced houses, but can also be present in commercial buildings. A party wall agreement, also known as a party wall award, is a legal document that outlines the rights and responsibilities of both property owners in relation to the party wall.

Despite the existence of such an agreement, disputes can still arise between property owners. Here are some common disputes and how to resolve them:

1. Non-compliance with the party wall agreement – Property owners may disregard the terms of the party wall agreement, such as failing to give notice or carrying out prohibited works. In such cases, the other property owner can seek legal action to enforce the agreement.

2. Damage to the party wall – In the event that the party wall is damaged due to works carried out by one of the property owners, the other owner may seek compensation for the repair costs.

3. Boundary disputes – Disputes may also arise in relation to the location of the party wall, particularly if one property owner believes it to be on their land. A surveyor can be hired to determine the true location of the party wall.

4. Noise or disturbance – Works carried out on the party wall may cause noise and disturbance to the other property owner. In such cases, the property owner carrying out the works should take measures to minimize these disturbances.

To avoid disputes, property owners should ensure that they fully understand the terms of the party wall agreement before carrying out any works. It is also recommended that they communicate and consult with their neighbour throughout the process.

If a dispute does arise, property owners should try to resolve it amicably through discussion and negotiation. If this is not possible, they can seek the assistance of a mediator or party wall surveyor. In some cases, legal action may be necessary to enforce the terms of the party wall agreement.

In conclusion, disputes over party wall agreements can be a common occurrence between property owners. However, by understanding the terms of the agreement, communicating with their neighbour, and seeking assistance when necessary, property owners can minimize the likelihood of disputes arising and resolve them effectively if they do occur.