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Home » Blog » Building Surveying » Boundary Determination » Can My Neighbour Move my Fence?

Can My Neighbour Move my Fence?

Aug 14, 2023


Hello and welcome to today’s property surveying blog post, in which I am going to be taking a look at boundary surveying matters. In today’s blog post, we are going to be taking a look at whether your neighbour is capable of moving your fence.

Ultimately if the fence is truly yours and is instated in the correct position then there are not capable of moving the fence as this could class as trespass and/or criminal damage and they could potentially face criminal charges for doing so.

Although this is under the assumption that the fence line is in the correct position between the two boundaries.

Boundary Survey

If your neighbour has had a boundary survey done in which it was found that the position of the fence was in fact pushed back onto their land then there would be within their right to move the fence and reinstate it to the correct position.

Although they can’t just do this without following the correct steps first if a boundary survey has been carried out the report should have been shared with you before action was taken and they should give you time to respond, which you could do by either accepting the findings of the report or you would be within your right to hire your own surveyor to conduct a boundary survey on your behalf.

If the two reports concur with one another that the fence is in fact in the wrong position then they could present that to a judge to gain an injunction to get the fence reinstated to the correct position.

Although if the two reports contradict one another, they can request that an independent survey be called upon that would take into account the two previous reports to come to their own determination on the matter.

The outcome of the third survey could also be binding if both parties agree to this, so if this was the case and the third surveyor conquered that your fence is on your neighbour’s land, then your neighbour would be within their right to remove the fence and reinstate it in the correct position.

Adverse Possession

Even if it is deemed that you are not the true owner of the land they could still be a possibility that you would be able to claim ownership of the land through adverse possession.

Adverse possession is a legal principle that is governed by The Land Registration Act 2002, in which one is able to claim ownership of a piece of land and become the registered owner despite the land being owned and registered by someone else.

One is capable of doing this if they have met the conditions that are outlined in The Land Registration Act 2002, which include holding that piece of land for a period of over 10 years and having believed that they were in fact the true owner of the land and have maintained and even made changes to the land over that time.

If all this is true then you may be able to make a claim for adverse possession by filling a ADV1: registration of a person in adverse possession form with HM land Registry.

It is also worth noting that even if all the above is true it does not guarantee a successful claim of adverse possession, rather it increases the likelihood of your claim being successful.

If this was the case then your neighbour would not be able to move the fence before they first have disputed your claim of the land and if the claim is successful then they would be unable to move the fence unless they wished to face charges of trespass and/or criminal damages.

I hope this gives you further insight into boundary surveying matters, if you have any further questions in regards to boundary surveying matters or any of the other services that we offer here at Stokemont then please do not hesitate to get in touch today by either giving us a call or alternatively popping us over an email and one of our team of experienced surveyors will be happy to assist and advise you.

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