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Court stops homeowner damaging neighbour’s property

The High Court has stopped a homeowner carrying out work that could cause damage to his neighbour’s property.

The issue arose because the two sides shared a party wall. The homeowner started excavation work exposing the foundations of the wall without serving notice and getting the necessary permission as required under the Party Wall Act 1996.

The neighbour was granted an injunction preventing further work going ahead until he had examined it and assessed whether it was acceptable.

The homeowner provided a temporary works design and the neighbour consented to those works going ahead.

However, an inspection later showed that there had been extensive damage to the neighbour’s property, and so he applied for the injunction to be continued.

The homeowner didn’t attend the hearing. The judge said that the he had shown total disregard for legal procedures.

The works carried out fully exposed the party wall and had caused substantial cracking. There was also the fact that the homeowner was reluctant to take advice from his own surveyor, who accepted there were problems with the work.

The court made a final injunction, with a penal notice, prohibiting the homeowner from undertaking further work unless the neighbour consented.

Please contact us if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of neighbour disputes.