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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71134
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I am the joint leaseholder of a ground floor flat, situated

Customer Question

I am the joint leaseholder of a ground floor flat, situated within a Victorian House in Ealing W5. The house is divided into 4 residential units. The property immediately above mine, was purchased as a rental investment by a female solicitor, and underwent a quick re-furb to claw back rental income. Since November 2013, my kitchen ceiling (situated immediately below her bathroom) has been severely affected by water ingress and as a consequence has been partially brought down. The local authority (L .B of Ealing) have witnessed the damage and have attended my flat on numerous occasions. Whilst acknowledging the substantial damage, they do not consider the situation to be a statutory nuisance and have refused to take action. The arrogant attitude of the owner of the flat, is beyond disgraceful. Any legal action I take against her, will either be ignored or result in me having to pursue her through the county court to recoup my costs. I am at my wit's end and unable to do my work.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.

Is the above owner's refurb responsible for the damage?

Is the leak now resolved?

How much will your flat cost to repair?

What do you want to know about this?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Having read the disclaimer, I do not think you can help me.

Thank you.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
If you are looking for a solicitor to act for you, we are not able to do that.

We provide legal answers and make suggestions to legal problems.

If you want to know whether it's worthwhile moving this forward and how you should move it forward that is exactly what we do.

From the very brief information you have given, it appears that the owner of the upstairs flat (who is ignoring you) is responsible for abating the nuisance (it may not be statutory public nuisance which is why the local authority will not get involved but it is certainly private nuisance), and the cost of repairs to the flat.

If the cost of those repairs is under £10,000 I would suggest that you got the repairs done and then asked the owner of the upstairs flat for the cost.

If the owner of the upstairs flat doesn't pay, you need to threaten legal proceedings and if necessary take them to the Small Claims Court.

Here's the link to the Small Claims Court

I have given you a very brief outline of liability and potential course of action. If you let me have some more information that I already asked for I may be able to clarify things for you.