The Party Wall Etc Act 1996 requires that notice be given to neighbouring owners where it is considered likely that the proposals of a neighbour will be likely to affect another neighbouring structure. It is a legal duty for a Building Owner to serve the appropriate notices in the correct manner. Failure to do so can result in an injunction being sought to stop the works.
Notices can be served in person or via post but in order to be valid all notices must contain the following information:-
NB: If the details of the neighbouring owner(s) are not known the notice can be served upon ‘The Owner’ however in order for this to be valid any such notice must be delivered in person or attached to premises of the building.
A Party Wall Notice is a legal document that is prepared by a building owner or his/her representatives regarding works that he/she intends to carry out in close vicinity to a neighbouring structure or to the boundary line. The Notice is intended to inform neighbouring owners (which can include longterm leaseholser etc) of the implications of their proposals on the neighbours. There are 3 types of notices, Line of Junction, Party Structure and Notice of Adjacent Excavation.
In many situations more than one type of notice is required and it is essential that you ensure all notices required under the Act are given.
Party Wall Notices should be served at the earliest opportunity in order to ensure that there is sufficient time for the notice to run and for negotiations, if a dispute arises, to be undertaken. However notices are only valid for 12 months so caution should be given so as not to serve the notice too early either as they may then expire before works commence. This is not usually an issue with smaller domestic scenarios but should be factored into larger, longer term projects.
Party Structure Notices are Required to be served 2 calendar months prior to the commencement of works and Line of Junction and Notice of Adjacent Excavation 1 calendar month prior to the commencement of works.
Our Party Wall Notice templates can be used to assist you in producing any type of party wall notices which you may need to serve if your proposed work comes within the scope of the Party Wall etc Act 1996.
The templates will also include the relevant letter of acknowledgement for the Adjoining Owner to complete and return to you or your surveyor.
It is of vast importance that notices have the correct information included in them as this will concede their validity under the Act. Any mistakes may invalidate the notice(s) and any award or agreement made thereafter.
The Adjoining Owner(s) should be given the opportunity to reply to the notice served. They will either consent or dissent from the notice served. If they consent all paperwork should be retained for future reference but no further action under the Act is required. It is however recommended that a Schedule of Condition is offered to the Adjoining Owner as this will ensure that the condition of the areas in close vicinity to the works is recorded prior to the commencement of works. This will ensure that no historic damage can be brought into question on completion of the works but equally that any damage genuinely incurred by the works can be identified.
If the neighbour dissents from the notice a surveyor or surveyors must be appointed. In normal circumstances all fees incurred by any such appointments will be payable by the building owner, however this must be agreed and awarded.
If 14 days after service of a notice no reply has been received a dispute will be considered to have occurred, except where notice was given to build to the line of junction solely on the land of the building owner.
If a dispute arises due to a lack of response to a notice served the adjoining owner(s) must be given 10 days in which to agree to the appointment of the building owners surveyor or confirmation of who they intend to appoint. A failure to respond to this further notice will result in the building owners surveyor making an appointment on behalf of the adjoining owner so as matters can proceed.
If a dispute has arisen and a surveyor or surveyors have been appointed an award (often referred to as an agreement) will be drawn up. This will determine the right to carry out works stipulated within the notice(s) given; the time and manner in which works are to be undertaken and any other matter incidental to the dispute including access and fees.
Which Type of Party Wall Notice do you Require?
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Whay our Clients say:
“Party Wall Surveyors gave me a great choice of options to help me with my loft conversion. I would recommend their service to anyone needing professional help. They were happy to guide me through the process of resolving issues”.
“You have a sense of panic when you find a Notice land on your doorstep! Party Wall Surveyors provided me with a free assessment and undertook the legal work to my home within my own time schedule. Half the price of the lowest other quote”
Margret & George, North London
“Buying our first home caused us enough stress but the intended extension gave us more. Party Wall Surveyors provided us with explanations to what the steps would be to resolve the issue. We were able to make the right decision for us. Definitely recommend these guys! Substantially less than others”
“As our family grew we decided a basement conversion would be a great option for us. Party Wall Surveyors explained to us what we would need to do to have a great room space for the kids. The kids seem happy and so are we. They served all the Notices and supervised the works getting my neighbours informed all along the process”
“I had an experience with a previous Surveyor over charging which appears very common, that left me out of pocket, Party Wall Surveyors came to my rescue; if you want a service you can trust – this is the one to use”
‘’We knew we needed work but was worried about getting the wrong Surveyor I have read so many horror stories and paying more than what we should. After a few quotes it was obvious that Party Wall Surveyors was the right choice to sort all the legals and Notices”.