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LondonlawyerJ, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 823
Experience:  Solicitor with over 15 years experience.
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my boundary at the bottom of my garden has a fence that has

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my boundary at the bottom of my garden has a fence that has been there 35 years
put there by the owners father, replaced several times over the years but never moved
now he says his father made a mistake and he wants to put a fence a metre on my property. Am I right in thinking that the physical fence having been there that long
that that is the boundary at this time.
Mr Michael Holt

LondonlawyerJ :

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

LondonlawyerJ :


The key concept here is adverse possession, which means that if you have used your neighbour’s land openly without permission, as if of right you may have been in adverse possession of their land. The old law on this was that if you did have adverse possession of the land for an uninterrupted period of 12 years you might be able to claim that the land is yours.

A new law was passed regarding adverse possession of registered land which meant that for claims for adverse possession arising after 2002 it was much harder to acquire through adverse possession rights to land.

The old law was retained for those who claim to have acquired rights to land by adverse possession before October 2003. On the dates you give you could well be in the situation where have acquired the land through adverse possession.

Do you accept that the neighbour is right in his assertion that his father made an error? Were you in occupation when the current boundary was established?

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I was not in possession when the fence was errected but have been

using the land since 2001 when me and my wife purchased the property

But your predecessors in title appear to have been using the land on our side of the fence. You get the benefit of their adverse possession. What is shown on the title plan at the Land Registry. This is not definitive about the boundaries but is a good indication of where the boundaries were at the time the fence was erected.
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