The Annotated Party Wall Act

by Matthew Hearsum

The Courts have frequently commented that the limited number of cases coming before them concerning the Party Wall etc. Act 1996 evidence that the majority of disputes are being resolved by the famous pragmatism and common sense of party wall surveyors.  But this is not always the case, and with increasing frequency building owners and adjoining owners are choosing to refer their disputes to the Courts.

The purpose of this publication is to provide both surveyors and owners with a examples of how the Courts have approached such disputes in the past, which may provide an indication of how they will approach them in the future.

On the right is a series of links to the individual section of the Party Wall Act annotated with the various cases that have considered the interpretation of that provision.

There are a very limited number of cases decided by the Courts concerning the 1996 Act itself, and so we must look to examples of the judicial approach to similar issues under the earlier legislation, such as the London Building Act 1930 to 1939.  I have differentiated between decisions that are  binding under the doctrine of precedent, which the Courts must follow, and those which are not binding, perhaps because they were decided under earlier legislation, or by a lower Court.

I hope that you find this publication useful, but if you have any queries on this publication, or in relation to party wall generally, please do get in touch.