Party Wall Surveyors

Party Wall etc. Act 1996

David Simmonds Associates have been involved in the adminstration of this legislation since its inception on 1st July 1997.

The Act regulates the relationship between 'building owners' and their neighbours, who are called 'adjoining owners', under the Act.

The Act has three sections which confer rights on building owners but which impose obligations on them if they wish to exercise those rights; these obligations require the service of notices on adjoining owners.

Section 1 deals with 'New building on the line of junction'; the line of junction being what would be commonly called the boundary.

Section 2 deals with 'Repair etc. of party wall: rights of owner'.

Section 6 deals with 'Adjacent excavation and construction'.

Each of these sections requires the service of notice on adjoining owners, if certain circumstances apply.

We advise clients on the application of the Act to their project; including the drafting and the serving of notices, on the adjoining owners, as required by the Act.

Once served with a notice or notices, under the Act, if an adjoining owner does not consent in writing, within fourteen days, a dispute is deemed to have arisen which falls to be determined as set out in section 10 of the Act.  Section 10 requires that, in the event of a dispute, the parties must either concur in the appointment of one surveyor, called the 'agreed surveyor', or each party must appoint their own surveyor.  The surveyors must be appointed in writing, they are stautorily appointed, sit as a tribunal and have quasi judicial powers. Because of their statutory role their appointment cannot be rescinded.  They determine the dispute by the making and serving, on the parties, an award.  This document sets out the rights and obligations of the parties, what work the building owner is authorised to carry out, the method of carrying it out and other relevant matters.

In the event of a dispute arising, as defined in the Act, our Principal, David Simmonds will act as either 'agreed surveyor', 'building owner's surveyor' or 'adjoining owner's surveyor' and he will liaise with the other party's surveyor to make and serve an Award on the parties under Section 10 of the Act.

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