How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ash Your Own Question
Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
75100385
Type Your Law Question Here...
Ash is online now

Hi, I own a new build 'detached property' - built two years

Resolved Question:

Hi,
I own a new build 'detached property' - built two years ago with many defects - far to extensive to go into here. The side of my house is adjacent to my neighbour's drive with a pathway beyond which is approx. 1 metre wide.
My driveway is adjacent to my other neighbour's side wall, with the same metre wide pathway running along the remainder of the property.
Everyone on the development agreed to a covenant granting reasonable access to carry out repairs etc.
The air-bricks on our properties are level with the ground and after much negotiation, the building company has agreed to raise the air-bricks. Work started yesterday, after apparent agreement from all parties. However, our neighbour today disputed that he had agreed access - I think because our property is being attended to before his.
The problem is, yesterday, the building company removed an airbrick and surrounding bricks leaving a fairly large hole on the side of our property next to the neighbour's driveway, with the intention of completing the work today. My neighbour has parked his car in such away, that the building company can not access the hole in order to complete the remedial work. In the meantime, my cavity wall is open to the elements and all vermin that want a cosy home.
Were do I stand regarding reasonable access - and how soon can I get it?
Many thanks
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 2 years ago.
Alex Watts :

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Alex Watts :

For now please let me know whether it is just maintenance you are carrying out?

Customer:

This is the building company agreeing to put something right - but our neighbour not allowing access to complete the remedial work

Alex Watts :

Ok - you have a right to access land even if you dont own it at all under the Access to Neighbouring Land Act 1992

Alex Watts :

You need to get a Solicitor to write and ask for access or say you will go to Court.

Alex Watts :

If they refuse then you can issue proceedings at the county Court

Alex Watts :

You need to complete form N1

Alex Watts :

http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n001-eng.pdf

Alex Watts :

The court will send the neighbour a copy and list the matter for hearing

Alex Watts :

The Court will decide whether to grant the order.

Alex Watts :

If the court does and the neighbour refuses they will be in contempt of Court and could be warned, fined or sent to prison

Alex Watts :

Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer:

Thankyou - in the covenant that all parties agreed to upon purchase - reasonable access was a prerequisite. I appreciate that I would need to engage a solicitor, but in the mean time the property is extremely vulnerable and open to the elements and vermin - is this the fastest way that access can be obtained?

Alex Watts :

Yes, a letter may do the trick in the first instance.

Alex Watts :

In any event you should get a Court order fairly quickly.

Alex Watts :

Does that help?

Customer:

Not really - I was hoping that there would be some sort of emergency order that could be granted to get things moving a lot faster - like in 48 hours - at the moment, because of our position next to a nature reserve, everything will want to come into a warm environment - unfortunately the neighbour in question feels that he has been hard done by and so is refusing to allow work on our property to complete - thanks anyway

Alex Watts :

You can get a Court order same day

Alex Watts :

So you could get one tomorrow.

Alex Watts :

But you are expected to have notified the neighbour.

Alex Watts :

If you do not, then you may not get your costs.

Alex Watts :

So yes, you could get a Court order tomorrow, but do not expect to recover all your costs.

Alex Watts :

If you want to do it tomorrow you need to complete forms N1

Alex Watts :

http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n001-eng.pdf

Alex Watts :

And N16a

Alex Watts :

http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n016a-eng.pdf

Alex Watts :

But you WILL need a Solicitor for an emergency Court order

Alex Watts :

But you are going to need to show serious risk of harm.

Customer:

Ok - that's fine - so I complete the N1 and take it from there?

Alex Watts :

And N16a

Customer:

Excellent - I think if I can reiterate this to the building company they may act. Thankyou!

Alex Watts :

Ok. Can I clarify anything else for you?

Customer:

No - all good I think!

Alex Watts :

Ok - if I could ask you to rate my answer before you go today - the button should be at the bottom of the screen

Alex Watts :

If you need more help please click reply.

Ash and 4 other Law Specialists are ready to help you