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.
  • Go back-and-forth until satisfied
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask JimLawyer Your Own Question
JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 17067
Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
97337639
Type Your Law Question Here...
JimLawyer is online now

We have contractors working on my block of flats and each

This answer was rated:

Hi, we have contractors working on my block of flats and each day they are dropping dangerous items onto my balcony. They never clean it up and I have to clear away screws and sharp objects which my dog could eat. I am trying to propose to them by way of contract that for each day I have to do this myself, I will receive a fixed compensatory amount. Is this legal?
JA: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: london
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: ive been contacting them over the past few months stating my displeasure with the number of times it has happened
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: They have asked us not to access the balcony during work hours, which will go on for 2 years. I don’t think this is reasonable either

Hello, this is Jim and welcome to JustAnswer.

I am one of the legal experts on the site and I am a dual-qualified solicitor (UK & Republic of Ireland)

Thank you for the question, I am reviewing the details now and I will aim to resolve it as quickly as possible for you.

Sorry to hear of the issue.

I don't see it as a problem if you propose that to them. Ultimately, they are causing a "nuisance" which in legal terms means their conduct is affecting the enjoyment of your property.

You say this is a block of flats so the freeholder needs to employ reasonably competent contractors to work on the building.

You may make more progress with a law firm - if you write to them yourself they will know you have no lawyer yet and they may not entertain any offers of compensation.

You could ask the local council for their thoughts on this - in case there are environmental health issues too.

The other option is contact your freeholder or management company and ask them for compensation for the disruption - you could apply to the First Tier Property Tribunal if the management company or freeholder are not doing a good enough job.

If you would like a lawyer to deal with this, the Law Society site has a useful search facility as follows : https://solicitors.lawsociety.org.uk

Alternatively, you can try these firms for legal representation (they are a charity who connect you to pro bono lawyers who do not charge you, assuming you meet their eligibility criteria) :

https://www.lawworks.org.uk/ or /www.nationalprobonocentre.org.uk/finding-legal-help/

Here is another: https://www.lawcentres.org.uk

I hope this helps

It was a pleasure to assist you today and I hope this answers the question.

If you have any follow up questions or if you would like me to clarify anything I have said, please let me know and I will be happy to help.

Many thanks,

Jim

Just a final note that if you would like to reconnect with me at a later date, simply add me as a favourite expert and you can then tag me in a question.

I look forward to helping you again soon.

Thanks again,

Jim



Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Thank you Jim. Is there any template you could recommend to use if I was to propose some form of contract stating that I require compensation and what do you think is a reasonable amount to claim for? I was going to propose £100 each time which I think is reasonable for the risk associated and disruption is causes me
Hi there, you could do but it may be worth doing it as a total sum if you know there is an end date, instead of in a piecemeal fashion. You mentioned two years - is there a date they are supposed to finish?.
Customer: replied 13 days ago.
They haven’t given an end date , they are replacing our illegal cladding and also trying to build two storeys up also so it could be much longer than 2 years depending on how many delays they have during this period.What would you say would be a reasonable amount? I was more tempted by the piecemeal fashion as I’m not looking to profit from this but just stop them from acting with such negligence and being more conscientious.To date I’ve had the foreman come in and clear the items but given the workmen know they have dropped items, I have to reach out to them each time to get them to clear it rather than them volunteering to donor when they know they have dropped items.The additional time it takes me to do this and supervise them and also having to stay in until they come round is a growing inconvenience and causing additional stress to my day that I don’t need, let alone having to worry that my dog will eat any stray screws, nails, fixings, bits of wood or insulation which would likely cause him extreme harm or death, let alone the Ian of causing us harm by stepping on any such items

Thanks, ***** ***** difficult situation. The letter would just need to say unless they pay you within 14 days then you will issue a claim against them. And this is the problem, because you can only issue one clam for this sort of thing. A claim for stress and inconvenience can be up to £3,000 and I would only really recommend you send one letter before action to them (not several).

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
Hm, I see the issue there. Do you think I could ask them for an amount towards the top end of that for this kind of claim?

Yes, as if you gave them an ultimatum and issued a claim for £100, if you win that then there is no more to claim. Its one bite of the cherry so to speak

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
I see, and do you think this sort of inconvenience warrants a compensation of £3k? Just trying to gauge what constitutes inconvenience at the highest level. I feel it goes a bit beyond just inconvenience because it’s downright dangerous. This is what I’ve managed to find on the balcony over the past two days…

Thanks, the £3K is for breach of contract / breach of consumer rights - but if there is negligence involved then it'd be higher.

You may need a law firm to quantify it for you. We couldn't do that as we are not a law firm and don't give legal advice (we're an internet forum).

Customer: replied 13 days ago.
I see. I may have to go down that route then. Thank you so much for your help and your time Jim. Have a wonderful evening!

My pleasure, glad I was able to help. Same to you!

Thanks,

Jim

JimLawyer and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you