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RJM Law
RJM Law, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 3482
Experience:  LL.B (Hons)
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I need some advice related to a dispute with my neighbor,

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I need some advice related to a dispute with my neighbor
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: London
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: None
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: This regarding damage from a water leak

Welcome and thank you for choosing our service, I will be the expert assisting you with this matter today.   I appreciate this matter is important to you and I shall try to resolve it as precisely and quickly as possible for you today.

Please note; there may be delays between messages as the experts on this website all work on a third party basis and are not online full time however, I shall endeavour to respond to your question as soon as possible.  I look forward to assisting you in this matter.

Thank you.

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
I bought a Flat in London last March. One week later, I was contacted by building management to inform me that water started leaking onto the roof of the shop directly below my flat. A plumber was sent quickly to investigate the leak and stop the water flow. Unfortunately, it took a couple visits before the source of the leak was identified and stopped.

Thank you for the question.  On a basic level, if your property has caused damage to another property, then you would potentially be liable for the costs ( or at least to claim on your insurance) however, as you had just moved in, it is possible the previous occupiers were aware of this and did not disclose it to you.   If that is the case then you can hold them liable for the cost of repairs. (or again, claim on their insurance instead of yours).  You will have to determine whether the previous occupiers were aware, or ought to have been aware, of the leak which cased the damage.  I would advise, in the first instance in going back to your conveyancing solicitor and seeing if there was anything in the survey or home report which shock have flagged this up.   If you can determine this then you can have your solicitor write to them and hold them liable for any such costs.

I hope this information proved helpful.  You will find a local solicitor who deals with these matters on the law society webpage which is as follows;

https://solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk/ (England)

https://www.lawscot.org.uk/find-a-solicitor/ (Scotland)

https://www.lawsociety.ie/Find-a-Solicitor/Solicitor-Firm-Search/ (Ireland)

Hopefully, I have answered your query in a way that is simple and easy to understand. If anything remains unclear, I will be more than happy to clarify it for you. In the meantime, thank you once again for using our services.

Should you require any further assistance on this matter, please do not hesitate to post a further questions for additional assistance.

Kindest Regards.

Customer: replied 16 days ago.
The leak caused some cosmetic damages to the shop which required re-painting. Today, the shop owner is asking me to pay for his insurance excess.
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
I have done some research online which seems to point that I am only liable if proven negligent. Is that correct?
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
I would like to highlight that the broken pipe was inside my property (i.e not in the common parts)

If you have acted in a way which caused the damage i.e. negligently, then yes you would be liable for the costs but this does not seem to be the case here.

RJM Law and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
What would be your assessment here. am I liable? Do I need to reimburse my neighbor for his insurance excess?
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
if not, could you please specify which section of the law I can use to respond to my neighbor's threatening email!
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
This is from my neighbor email:
"If the invoice is not settled within the next 24 hours, we will pursue the Head Lessee for the cost (who will then charge you through the service charge) or appoint solicitors to pursue the claim, which will entail fees. "
Customer: replied 16 days ago.
Are you still here?