The Party Wall Act

What is the Party Wall Act?

The Party Wall etc Act 1996 provides a framework that enables issues relating to party wall matters to be resolved without the need for legal action.  It takes into account the rights of a Building Owner to carry out alterations/improvements, whilst also protecting the interests of the Adjoining Owner (of which there could be several, such as freeholders and leasees) whose property will be affected by the works. The Act sets out statutory procedures for carrying out that work.

Its aim is to enable works to proceed in a timely manner. Whilst an Adjoining Owner doesn’t have the right to prevent works being carried out (unless the necessary notice has not been served), they do have the right to appoint a Party Wall Surveyor to protect their interests.

What works does the Party Wall Act cover?

Residential, commercial and industrial buildings are all covered by the Act, and typical works that require a Party Wall Agreement fall into three categories:

  • Work on an existing party wall or structure, such as underpinning the wall or raising the height of a wall for a loft conversion.
  • Building a new wall astride or up to your property’s boundary line.
  • Excavation within certain distances of a party wall or structure to a depth that exceeds your neighbour’s foundations.

Do you think that your plans might fall under the Party Wall Act? Why not give us a call on 0800 980 3113 to find out how we can help.


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