The Act introduced a framework by which disputes in relation to excavations and other works near boundaries or neighbouring buildings may be resolved. Anyone who proposes to undertake work which may be affected by the Party Wall Act, must give adjoining owners notice of their intentions. This notice applies even when the work will not go beyond the centre line of the division of the properties. The Act also provides, where there are disputes over this work, for the resolution of the disputes.
You are entitled to repair and maintain party walls. In the case of 'party structures', you must serve a 'party structure notice' on the adjoining owner, giving two months notice. The work detailed must be carried out within a year, after which time the notice becomes invalid.
An adjoining owner, served with a party structures notice, may issue a counter-notice within one month requiring additional works to be carried out, and you must consent within 14 days or a dispute is deemed to exist. A summary of your rights is below:
Note that the Act also covers certain excavations, which might affect a building belonging to an adjoining owner. These are:
Updated: 20 November 2013