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Boundary Disputes

April 28, 2017

Boundary disputes are very common amongst neighbours, often because it can be extremely difficult to establish where the boundary of a property is if it is not specified in the deeds, or if there is no Land Registry compliant survey, or if the plan on your title alone is not exact enough to determine where the boundary accurately lies. 

However, it is clearly important to know where the boundary is because this determines, in respect of land, the rights and liabilities of the property owner or occupier. 

What is a boundary?

A boundary is generally a line which separates two pieces of land. It could be physical, for example a fence, or artificial, for example where there is no fence or wall between your and your neighbour’s driveway. 

How do you know where your boundary is?

The first place to look to see where the boundary is, is your property Deeds. If your Deeds do not contain any provisions, or your Deeds contain conflicting provisions to your neighbour’s Deeds, then there are other ways you can determine where the boundary is, for example, by considering the Ordnance Survey map, instructing a surveyor to determine where the boundary is, or even informally agreeing the boundary with your neighbour.   

Experience has highlighted a few common examples of how boundary disputes can arise including:

  • Neighbour erecting fencing in a different place;
  • Fencing already being standing, however it does not match the line which appears on the title plan;
  • Garages or out-buildings have been built, or are scheduled to be built, on part or all of your land. 

A word of caution, it is important to bear in mind that your boundary could have changed over the years because your predecessors have reached an agreement with your neighbours, or even your neighbour’s predecessors. 

Boundary disputes can be very complicated, time consuming and expensive in the arguing of them. It is crucial you seek legal advice to ensure that the dispute is resolved and the boundary is properly documented, in order that should any future disputes regarding that same boundary arise, then they can be more easily resolved. 

If you have a boundary dispute and would like legal advice, click here

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