What is a Party Wall Award?
The process and requirements of a Party Wall Award are as set out in the Party Wall and so on. Act 1996. A Party Wall Award is a contract made in between at least 2 neighbouring occupiers prior to the beginning of construction/building work which is to be undertaken to a party border or structure, or where works are being undertaken in close proximity to a party boundary or structure. There are 3 primary types of work which require a Party Wall Property surveyor to perform a Party Wall Award and these are:
- Line of junction (building a new wall on or along with a limit).
- Party Structure Works (works to an existing party wall such as cutting into, restoring, thickening etc.).
- Adjacent Excavation (excavations to a lower level within either 3m or 6m of an existing building).
In London and throughout the UK, our experienced commercial building property surveyors perform a variety of professional surveying services including Party Wall Surveys (Party Wall Awards). At Commercial Structure Surveyors we conduct Party Wall Studies by experienced and expert Party Wall Surveyors throughout the UK.
Party Wall (WikiPedia)
Party Wall Act
The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 is a making it possible for Act, insofar as it gives the owner of a home the legal right to carry out particular works that might otherwise constitute trespass or problem.
However, it likewise looks for to safeguard the interests of adjacent owners from any possibly negative impacts that such works might have by enforcing a requirement that all adjacent owners be given prior notification of them.
In addition, the Act attends to a compulsory disagreement resolution procedure moderated by a statutorily appointed surveyor or surveyors if neighbouring owners have issues about the application of any proposition so notified.
Specifically, such notification should be served where the owner of a property (called ‘the structure owner’) intends to undertake any building work explained in Sections 1, 2 and 6 of the Act. Note that it is only those works that are covered by the Act and the scope is limited to the following:
- Area 1 applies where it is proposed to set up a brand-new wall at a border that is not already built on.
- Section 2 concerns existing party structures, that include party partitions, walls and floorings (that different buildings or parts of structures), party fence walls (basically a limit wall in between lands in separate ownership which is developed astride a limit) and, in some instances, a neighbour’s independent property.
- Section 6 can apply to excavations up to 6 m far from a structure or structure on neighbouring land, subject to depth requirements which the Act sets out.
The info that Sees must provide in regard of works covered the above areas is various in each case. The requirements of Section 1 and Section 6 Notifications are set out in those areas however the requirements of a Notification associating with Section 2 works is set out in Area 3 of the Act. It is necessary to keep in mind that the validity of any notification not supplying all the relevant information or served in the incorrect manner, could be open to challenge in Court.
There is no basic kind of Notification although many individuals use those published by the RICS or versions appended to the explanatory pamphlet provided by the Department for Communities and City Government. Offered all the information needed by the pertinent area of the Act is present, a basic letter would be equally valid.
Depending on the situations of any given project there might be more than one adjoining owner on whom notice needs to be served in respect of the very same work and, in the case of deep excavations, an Adjacent Owner might be aside from an immediate neighbour. It is constantly more suitable to talk about the designated deal with adjacent owners before serving them with formal composed notice – a proposition well described may reduce issues sufficient to prevent a conflict occurring and prevent the need to appoint property surveyors.
There are two exceptions where the need to serve notice might be avoided:
- De minimis works: The government’s explanatory brochure states that some works on a party wall may be so minor that service of notice under the Act would be generally considered as not essential and give as examples works unlikely to affect the structural strength or support functions of a party structure or cause damage to the neighbours side of it, such as re-plastering, shallow chasing for electrical wiring or placing power sockets, and screws to support shelves, kitchen cabinets, and so on.
- Functions under Section 2 of the Act supplied that composed approval is acquired from all Adjacent Owners and Occupiers before work commences.
The three types of Notification are understood, respectively as:
- Area 1: Line of Junction Notice
- Area 3 (for S2 works): Party Structure Notice
- Area 6: Notice of Adjacent Excavation
A party structure notification need to be served at least 2 months prior to the date on which it is proposed to start that work. The other 2 notifications should be served a minimum of one month prior to work starting.
The obligatory info which Notices must contain are as follows:
- Line of Junction Notice:
- A sign of the building owner’s desire to construct a wall.
- A description of the wall.
- Party Structure Notification:
- The name and address of the structure owner.
- The nature and details of the proposed work.
- The date on which the proposed work will start.
- Notice of Adjacent Excavation:
- A sign of the building owner’s propositions.
- A declaration as to whether or not the structure owner proposes to underpin or otherwise reinforce or secure the structures of the structure or structure of the adjoining owner.
- Accompanying sections and plans revealing: a) the site and depth of any excavation the structure owner proposes to make; b) if he proposes to set up a structure or structure, its site.
The majority of the pro-forma notices in use consist of the following information as a matter of course regardless of the type of notice:
- The date of the notice.
- If various), the name and addresses of both the structure and adjacent owners (and the addresses of the residential or commercial properties being worked on/affected.
- A declaration regarding the commencement of works relative to the suitable notification duration.
- If the recipient actively dissents from the works or fails to react within 14 days, an advisory note describing what occurs.
Area 10 of the Act specifies that where an adjacent owner does not consent in writing to works alerted by the building owner under Areas 3 and 6, both celebrations need to either settle on the visit of a single surveyor to act for both of them (referred to as the Agreed Property Surveyor), or each designate their own property surveyor, to determine by award matters in dispute between the parties.
Where a task is straightforward, this might just include consideration of the time and way in which those works are to be carried out. In more complex plans, believed will have to be provided to a commensurately greater number of aspects and undoubtedly selected surveyors have the statutory jurisdiction to make an award in respect of any matter connected with any work to which the act relates.
The exact same treatment is used to fix any subsequent conflicts between neighbouring owners that might occur in relation to the notified works, including any loss or damage suffered by an adjacent owner as a result of their execution.
Inaction on the part of the adjoining owner does not halt the statutory procedure. A disagreement can develop by an adjoining owner actively dissenting, that is, communicating to the building owner an objection in regard of some matter emerging out of or incidental to the works – the means of making that objection are not important, however if he remains quiet, neither dissenting nor consenting for a period of 14 days after having actually been served with a Notice under either Section 3 or Section 6, the Act deems a dissent to have developed in any event.
There is no considered dissent arrangement in Section 1 of the Act. A valid dispute can still arise, and surveyors be selected in accordance with Area 10, in regard of works informed under that area but only as relates to real dissent on particular premises. An adjacent owner’s reasons for contesting Section 2 and Section 6 works are rarely defined prior to the consultation of property surveyors and in most cases not even then.
Where dissent has arisen, whether real or considered, both owners are legally obliged to designate a concurred property surveyor or, if they can not collectively agree on a single person, a surveyor each and if asked for to make such an appointment by the other party, need to do so within 10 days of the demand being served. Failure to comply, automatically offers the owner making the demand the statutory authority to appoint a property surveyor on behalf of the recalcitrant party. This procedure is set out in section 10( 4) of the Act.
Where 2 property surveyors are appointed, they are obliged to agree upon the choice, in writing, of a third property surveyor who may be called upon by either of the surveyors or either of the celebrations to identify the challenged matters and make the essential award. The 3rd surveyor is never ever selected by anyone however the Act gives the person so selected the exact same statutory powers as the two surveyors.
3rd property surveyors are most frequently called upon where the two surveyors have actually reached an impasse in their deliberations over some specific point and frequently this can be in regard on the reasonableness of the charges of the surveyor designated by the adjacent owner. Seldom will a 3rd property surveyor be asked to prepare an award in regard of the whole works however may accompany one or other of the two property surveyors to do so if the requirement emerges.
There is no definition of who can be a property surveyor, but it must not be the same individual that will supervise the works.
The award will set out the works that can be performed, who will pay the charges for the preparation of the award and examination of the works to make sure that they abide by the works, and who will spend for the works. If the work is exclusively for the benefit of the building owner, then they will generally be required to pay the charges and the cost of the works.
Parties have 2 week to attract the county court if they disagree with the award.
The Act permits access to the adjoining property for the purposes of performing the works whether the adjoining owner permits or not, however they should be provided 2 week notification.
NB: The intro of The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 (Electronic Communications) Order 2016 means that from 6 April 2016, notifications and other documents can be served by electronic communications.
The info that Discovers need to offer in regard of works covered the above sections is various in each case. The requirements of Section 1 and Area 6 Notices are set out in those sections however the requirements of a Notification relating to Section 2 works is set out in Section 3 of the Act. A valid dispute can still emerge, and property surveyors be designated in accordance with Area 10, in regard of works informed under that section but only as regards real dissent on particular grounds. An adjacent owner’s reasons for contesting Section 2 and Section 6 works are hardly ever specified prior to the consultation of surveyors and in many cases not even then.
Where dissent has actually arisen, whether real or deemed, both owners are legally obliged to select a concurred surveyor or, if they can not jointly concur on a single person, a property surveyor each and if asked for to make such a visit by the other party, must do so within 10 days of the demand being served.
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