Archive for the ‘Party Wall Blog’ Category

Privilege and the party wall surveyor’s file

April 04, 2016  |   Party Wall Appeals,Party Wall Blog,Uncategorized   |     | ?>

In a number of cases I have advised on recently the party wall surveyors have declined to provide information from their file on that basis that some or all of it may be subject to privilege. This post explores the situations where privilege may arise, and where it does not. What is “Privilege”? Privilege is a rule that allows a party to litigation to withhold evidence (either written or oral) from the Court ...

Serving notices by email

On 10 March 2016 the Department for Communities and Local Government approved the first amendment to the Party Wall etc. Act since it was enacted in 1996. The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 (Electronic Communications) Order 2016 - which comes into effect on 6 April 2016 - amends section 15 of the Party Wall Act to provide for service of notices, awards and other documents by email and other electronic means of ...

Bridgland v Earlsmead Estates Limited: unnecessary inconvenience

On 1 July 2015 His Honour Judge Grant handed down judgment in Bridgland v Earlsmead Estates Limited [2015] EWHC B8 (TCC) in which the Technology and Construction Court considered the purpose of section 4 counter-notices, and whether a claim for breach of statutory duty could be made under section 7(1) of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 (“the 1996 Act”). Background Facts The defendant is the freehold owner of a ...

Checking whether a party wall notice is valid

November 10, 2014  |   Party Wall Blog,Party Wall Notices   |     | ?>

A common problem faced by surveyors is ascertaining whether or not a notice served by or on behalf of a building owner (or more rarely an adjoining owner) is valid. The test for assessing whether notices under a statute are valid is set out by the Court of Appeal in Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council v Total Fitness UK Ltd. There are two stages. Stage 1 The first stage ...

Limitation periods and the party wall act

October 29, 2014  |   Party Wall Awards,Party Wall Blog   |     | ?>

This post started life as a discussion on LinkedIn that generated a fair bit of debate, and I thought it would be helpful to surmise what can be a particularly tricky area of law. It commonly arise where an adjoining owner is claiming money against a building owner and so this post focuses on this scenario. Similar (but not identical) provisions apply for non-money claims (e.g. for specific performance). What is ...

Trespassing walls, injunctions and damages

If a building owner builds a wall wholly or partly on the adjoining owner’s land without consent the adjoining owner may apply to the Court for an injunction requiring that wall to be demolished. However, it should be remembered that the Court does not have to grant an injunction, and may award damages instead. The Courts have developed a  “good working rule” for when the Court will award damages. The elements of ...

Damages for trespassing foundations

August 21, 2014  |   Basements,Party Wall Blog,Party Wall Damages   |     | ?>

In my last post I looked at what remedies were available to an adjoining owner when faced with underpinning that has encroached onto their land, and in particular the remedy of self-redress. In this post I will look at how the adjoining owner can recover the losses incurred in removing the trespassing foundations, which owners those claim may be brought against, and in which venue the claims may be brought. Types of claim

Removing trespassing foundations

Over the last 18 months I have seen an increasing number of cases where the underpinning from one development has encroached upon adjoining land, thereby affecting or preventing development of that adjoining land. This can be a very tricky issue, particularly where one or more of the properties have changed hands since the original works took place. This first post will look at the options open to the adjoining owner upon ...

Security for expenses part 2 – Forms of security

August 07, 2014  |   Party Wall Blog,Party Wall Security for Expenses   |     | ?>

In my last post I looked at a possible limit on the ability for the adjoining owner to request security for expenses under section 12 of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 (“the 1996 Act”). Turning now to the form of security, this is not prescribed. The Oxford English Dictionary defines “Security” in this context as:- “A thing deposited or pledged as a guarantee of the fulfilment of an undertaking or the repayment ...

Security for expenses part 1 – Types or work

This is the first of two posts that look at Security for Expenses and, in particular the type of works for which security may be available and the forms in which the security may take. Under section 12 of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 (“the 1996 Act”) the adjoining owner may serve a notice on the building owner requiring them to give security for expenses. The methods of giving security is not prescribed in the ...