Building Owners



When you carry out party wall work you have
legal responsibilities and obligations under The Party Wall etc Act 1996 BUT you
have rights as well.



Building Owners

 Section 2 of the Act
confers rights and responsibilities but only if you initiate the Act and follow
the required process.

The most commonly used rights are;

  • To underpin, thicken or raise a party structure,

    a party fence wall or an external wall which belongs to the Building Owner and

    is built against a party structure or a party fence wall, including excavating

    up to the boundary for foundations for a new wall.

  • Cut into a wall to take the bearing for a beam

  • Raise the height of a wall and/or increase the

    thickness of a party wall and to cut off any projections/overhangs which

    prevent you from doing so

  • Demolish and rebuild the party wall including

    foundations up to the boundary

  • Underpin the whole thickness of the wall

  • Protect two adjoining walls by putting a

    flashing from higher over the lower, even if this requires cutting into Adjoining

    Owner’s independent building.

Section 8 of the Act also gives you the right to enter the
premises of the Adjoining Owner for the purposes of executing any work in pursuance
of the Act. With these right come responsibilities/ obligations to your Adjoining

  • To serve the appropriate notices and give the

    relevant notice periods BEFORE starting work.

  • To carry out the work with the minimum of inconvenience

    to your neighbours.

  • To make good all the damage to any adjoining

    properties caused by your work.

  • To pay all the Party Walls Surveyors fees.


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The Party Wall etc Act 1996 is often over looked by Building
Owners during the planning stages when the focus is on the architectural and
design elements and the obtaining necessary contents. As the notice periods
will be between one and two months such as oversight can set the works back

There are other potential consequences if you do not follow
the process laid down by the Act;

  • The Adjoining Owner(s) may well get an

    injunction to stop the work

  • You may be responsible to the Adjoining Owners for

    cost and damages.