The Party Wall etc Act 1996 provides the legal framework upon which the processes for resolving disputes in relation to building works on party walls, party fence walls and excavations near to adjacent buildings are based.

Anyone who plans to undertake building works, (in England and Wales) described within the Act, must by law give the adjoining owner notice of their intended works. A brief guide to the works included within the Act is set out below;

New building works abutting or astride the line of junction between two properties.
Structural work affecting an existing party wall or party fence wall, this includes; repairs and making good, alterations, thickening of the wall, raising or demolishing and rebuilding, cutting into the wall for purposes such as damp proofing or steel beam installation, cutting away from the wall, for example chimney breast removal.
Excavating, or constructing foundations within three metres of an adjoining owner’s building where the new foundations will go deeper than the adjoining owner’s foundations.
Excavating, or constructing foundations within six metres of an adjoining owner’s building where the new foundations will intersect a line taken at a 45 degree angle from the bottom of the adjoining owner’s foundations.