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LondonlawyerJ
LondonlawyerJ, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 814
Experience:  Solicitor with over 15 years experience.
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There is a rather substantial retaining wall that forms the

Customer Question

There is a rather substantial retaining wall that forms the boundary between our house and a small block of flats--we are below them by several meters. The wall is in the process of failing. We have a structural engineers report that points to trees, shrubs, and a soil level that is higher than it should all of which are on our neighbors side of the wall. The structural engineer felt that the wall was their responsibility, we have an email from them that confirms this from legal advise they obtained. They seemingly agreed to fix the wall and have served section 20 notices to the leaseholders of the flats.

However, now hey now are contending that with our a piece of paper that says the wall is theirs they are now not going to do anything. They have gotten the council involved who are in the process of issuing a letter giving us 28 days to agree a way forward.

I believe that they are just trying to get us to agree to pay for part of the repairs. How do we prove who is responsible for the wall/what do we do?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  LondonlawyerJ replied 3 years ago.

LondonlawyerJ :

Hello, I am a solicitor with over 15 years experience. I will try to help you with this.

LondonlawyerJ :

Do you have access to your old coneyancing letters and docuemtns from your solicitor at the time you purchased the property. One of the things he should have investigated and advised you about is who is responsible for the upkeep of that wall.

LondonlawyerJ :

Your first step should be to check those documents.

LondonlawyerJ :

However as a general principal whoever is responsible for maintaining that wall if it is being damaged by your neighbours use and management of their property it is likely that they will be liable in negligence for any harm caused by a failure of the wall .

LondonlawyerJ :

I will be unable to view this site for most of the rest of the day due to work commitments but will look in later today when I can.

JACUSTOMER-2h447kba- :

We have reviewed the conveyancing letters and the boundary drawn is clearly drawn excluding the wall along that side. There is no specific mention of ownership. Our research indicated that an English law puts ownership of the wall to the uphill freehold.

JACUSTOMER-2h447kba- :

I would have thought that there were some standard rules about who owns which boundary wall.

LondonlawyerJ :

I assume this is registred land and that you are looking at the title plan. Are there any T marks on the plan? I do not think there is any general rule as described by you in the question. Responsibility for maintenance of boundary walls/fences is something that the conveyancing solicitor shodl advise on. When did you buy the property?

JACUSTOMER-2h447kba- :

Yes it is the land registry title document. There are no 'T' marks. The property was purchased in 2005. I have been through the sellers property information form and it lists the boundaries as 'not known' in section 1.

LondonlawyerJ :

look at the correspondence from your solicitor,look for his report on property and see if he advised you. If not you may want to call him to find out what his view on this is and of he hasn't got one why not?