What If Neighbour Ignores Party Wall Notice

After serving your adjoining owner/neighbour with a party wall notice they may respond as follows:

Give Consent

The adjoining neighbour allows you to conduct the projected works. They can communicate their consent through writing but doing so does not imply an abdication of their rights under the party wall act.

It is a simple statement showing that there are no disputes between both parties. In this case, the party wall surveyor will indicate the terms of the consent, and the need to assess the current condition of the adjoining owner’s property.

Consent should retain the adjoining neighbour’s rights under the party wall act. It should also demonstrate that disagreements related to the works will be managed as they arise.

Dissent the Notice

If the adjoining neighbour dissents to the proposed works, both parties must solve the dispute in accordance with the requirements of section 10 of the party wall act.

Each owner may appoint a party wall surveyor to act as an arbitrator. Sometimes the nominated party wall surveyors can choose a third party wall surveyor to provide impartial judgment.

Two party wall surveyors will then assess and determine the dispute. The third surveyor will offer judgment on matters that the two appointed party wall surveyors cannot agree upon. Often, such discussions end amicably with a party wall agreement.

Section 10 of the party wall act allows surveyors to determine disputes related to works that fall under the party wall act.

These disputes include the right to conduct the construction or excavation works, and the time and approach of execution. Remember, the adjoining owners will also determine whether or not protruding foundations will be part of the works.

What If the Adjoining Owner does not Respond?

If the adjoining owner neither consents nor dissents the party wall notice within 14 days after issuance, they will be considered to have dissented. An adjoining owner may fail to respond due to various reasons like:

  • They do not dwell at the property
  • They are not know how to respond
  • They have not found an opportunity to respond

Before commencing the construction works, a building owner will need to serve an additional party wall notice, commonly known as the section 10 (4) notice. With this notice, the adjoining owner will have ten more days within which they can respond.

Once the ten days lapse, you can then nominate a party wall surveyor on behalf of the adjoining owner. The surveyor will facilitate the progression of the matter and ensure that your project does not delay due to the dissent.

In this case, the building owner will only be allowed to execute the construction project on their own land. However, they will be able to continue once the notice time elapses.

Have you served an adjoining neighbour with the party wall notice but they have not responded to it?

While you can serve them with section 10 (4) notice, working with professionals is critical. Feel free to contact one of our experienced party wall surveyors, and we shall help you determine the validity of the initial party wall notice.

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