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Help with possible injunction against neighbour. Please!

(52 Posts)
hooliodancer Mon 07-Mar-16 20:09:30

I will try to be brief!

We bought our house in 1999. Boundary defined by fence. No mention from neighbour that fence is in the wrong place.

New neighbour in October comes along and says fence is in wrong place, we have 7 inches width of land he says is his according to land registry plans.

We say the law says our land is defined by the boundary feature and that land registry plans cannot be relied upon to define boundaries.

On Saturday we got a solicitors letter saying he is going to take down the fence and dig foundations in our garden( the 7 inch strip) for an extension he is building, and saying he will remove our property from the strip (plants and trees). He gave us 7 days notice from the date the letter was written. So he intends to do this on Friday.

We are sorting out using our legal cover as part of our house insurance, but this takes time. We have been using the helpline, but have no had to apply to use a solicitor.

My understanding is that he can't just claim this land like this, and I am clear on the law about it etc. From what I have been told and have read the law is on our side.

The legal helpline of our insurance company say "he can't do that".

But how do we stop him?

I am willing to pay for an injunction. But he would say he isn't trespassing as it's his land. So would an injunction work?

He is intending to rip out beautiful roses which have been there for 16 years. I just want to stop him doing this. It's just not fair, I love my garden so much. The stress has been awful. Our garden is tiny, so this amount of land makes a big difference.

Thanks for any help.

AlmaMartyr Tue 08-Mar-16 17:05:15

Bumping for you.

LowDudgeon Tue 08-Mar-16 17:50:12

There have been threads like this on MN before, & over similarly tiny strips too - they have linked other fora which deal specifically with property disputes, I'll see if I can find one for you.

(But I'm sure I've heard that land registry documents can't differentiate down to a few inches? so he can't prove it either way & has no right to damage your garden.)

LaurieFairyCake Tue 08-Mar-16 17:52:47

He can't do it as its criminal damage. Ie. You call the police.

It's only a civil matter if he goes to court to get the boundaries ratified.

Until then he can't just attack your boundary. If it's your fence he can't touch it.

LaurieFairyCake Tue 08-Mar-16 17:53:26

And he'd need a party wall act agreed too if he's building an extension.

LowDudgeon Tue 08-Mar-16 17:55:55

You'd need to have a good rummage around but I bet there are similar disputes there

Or you could start your own thread initially & then have a look round.

LowDudgeon Tue 08-Mar-16 18:03:37

This one sounds exactly like yours (it isn't yours, is it? It was started 3-4 months ago)

LowDudgeon Tue 08-Mar-16 18:09:33

This post seems to have some very specific helpful advice

LIZS Tue 08-Mar-16 18:14:13

Who owns the fence? A surveyor would need to determine where the boundary actually lies, you may even be able to claim adverse possession although I think this changed in recent years.

hooliodancer Tue 08-Mar-16 19:19:32

Yes I have read all the garden law stuff, but thanks so much for the link. Garden law has really helped me to clarify the law on this.

The question really now is around whether we can get an injunction given the boundary has not been determined . I may pay for a diy injunction, but don't want to do so if it's a waste of money given the boundary is not legally determined.

LowDudgeon Tue 08-Mar-16 22:17:16

If an injunction can buy you time, I reckon it's worth it! otherwise he may just go ahead on Friday & rip out your roses sad

babybarrister Wed 09-Mar-16 09:56:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LaurieFairyCake Wed 09-Mar-16 10:28:34

Id also be standing out there pruning my roses so he couldn't touch them - and calling the police if he tried to put his hands on them or me.

gingeroots Wed 09-Mar-16 12:22:00

hoolio how are things going ?

gingeroots Wed 09-Mar-16 12:26:14

you need to get a solicitors letter to him urgently asking for him to undertake not to do anything until matters have been resolved or determined by a court.

but if the boundary is disputed is it possible to stop work ?

when you say "determined by court" do you mean going to court to resolve the boundary issue ?

would you know if I'm right in believing what I've read in that this can be a very lengthy ,costly and uncertain business .And that the "winner " has to pay costs ?

littlenicky61 Wed 09-Mar-16 12:26:41

I would also be taking lots of photos of how everything looks now . Maybe a video too - a video of you measuring everything as proof of what is there now and where etc,- just in case he goes ahead and you need to show a court in future what he did

Good luck sounds a nightmare - sounds like he just wants a bigger extension to be honest

LowDudgeon Wed 09-Mar-16 16:31:34

but if the boundary is disputed is it possible to stop work ?

but if the boundary is disputed how is it possible to start work?

AnchorDownDeepBreath Wed 09-Mar-16 16:35:02

So he has paperwork that he believes proves the new boundary?

I'd be getting a legal letter sent explaining that you don't believe his documents are accurate and asking him to cease any work until the boundary is proved, as it's under dispute. In legalese, of course.

Otherwise he could go ahead and then defend a future claim by saying he believed he had proof of where the boundary stood and did not know that there was a possibility his paperwork is incorrect.

Legal advice is the way forward if the strip makes a big difference to your garden.

hooliodancer Wed 09-Mar-16 19:14:17

Thanks! Yes, we have sent a solicitors letter today, hopefully he will back off.

We have said the boundary needs to be agreed before anything gets built.

We will call the police if he does anything to get it logged at least.

The solicitor says it would not look good for him if he carries on and does what he threatens.

superram Wed 09-Mar-16 19:26:53

He also needs you to sign a party wall agreement if he is excavating within 3m of the boundary. Don't do this and make sure you appoint a surveyor-that he has to pay for

gingeroots Wed 09-Mar-16 19:49:13

I have a very similar situation ,so very interested in this .

How are you going to get the boundary agreed ? I know it's possible for the land registry to record an agreed boundary with details .But doesn't this depend on both sides agreeing ?

Or are you going to go to court to argue your case ?

hooliodancer Wed 09-Mar-16 22:44:10

We are going to try to get it agreed without going to court. But yes, both sides must agree. Or at least agree to let a surveyor decide. And it will cost, despite the law seemingly supporting our view.

What is annoying (understatement ) is that the law is on our side but it costs a lot to put the law into practice.

My neighbour is a bully though. And very stubborn. It's a nightmare, it really is.

gingeroots Thu 10-Mar-16 10:49:08

I'm in same situation so I completely sympathise .

I think there's no chance of our neighbour agreeing to let a surveyor decide .Indeed I've already spent nearly £1000 on a survey which has made no difference to him .

I'd be really interested to hear how it all goes .

LurkingHusband Thu 10-Mar-16 10:52:26

the law is on our side but it costs a lot to put the law into practice

You think that's an accident ?

Trollicking Thu 10-Mar-16 11:32:33

Is the fence on their land according to the land registry? Are the plans/ measurements accurate enough? Are you going for adverse possession?

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