Some of the most protracted and costly civil cases in the courts have concerned boundary disputes. It is essential that you know precisely where your boundaries are before building work commences or before starting a claim against a neighbour or defending one. We are here to ensure that you know exactly where your boundary lies, and to provide you with practical planning law advice to save you time and money.
What Is Involved In A Boundary Dispute?
A boundary dispute is any dispute regarding the exact boundaries of your property, or the property of a neighbour.
Exact boundary has a special meaning in property law that is not covered by general boundaries such as you might find on Ordnance Survey maps. An exact boundary, for instance, might run down the middle of a stream or to one side or the other of it, but the general boundary will make no differentiation between these three scenarios.
It is often important to establish exactly what a reasonable layperson would have expected when buying a property.
Boundary disputes are often easier to start than to resolve as ideas about general boundaries, exact boundaries, and informal agreements regarding boundaries can frequently come into conflict. It is important to negotiate with your neighbours prior to starting legal proceedings, but if legal conflict is inevitable it is important to get legal advice.
Conflicts may arise where there is a lack of understanding about the rights, which are available to neighbours, particularly in the case of property developments where there is a shared driveway for example.
When Might A Boundary Have Changed Over Time?
If a hedge encroaches on your territory, a stream is diverted or grows wider, or a fence is built deliberately further and further onto your property the boundary might change.
When boundaries change, whether by mistake or deliberately, it often leads to disputes that can only be resolved either in person or in a court of law. The government recommendation is that you try to resolve your differences without entering a court of law as far as possible.
How Do We Confirm Your Boundary?
We will take our time to carefully check the Deeds of your property and Land Registry records. If necessary, we can arrange a site visit to confirm our findings. With Boundary Disputes perhaps more so than any other areas of planning law, early intervention from a solicitor can be vital and can save substantial costs.
Can We Help You With A Boundary Matter?
We would be glad to carry out checks on your boundary for you, or to advise you in cases where your neighbour is encroaching on your land.
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