The Party Wall etc. Act 1996 provides a framework for preventing and resolving disputes in relation to party walls, some boundary walls and excavations near neighbouring buildings and structures.
Building owners proposing to carry out work covered by the Act must give adjoining owners proper notice of their intentions in the way set down in the Act. Adjoining owners can agree or disagree with what is proposed. Where they disagree, the Act provides a mechanism for resolving disputes by appointed surveyors. The requirements of the Act are separate from the need to obtain planning permission, building regulation approval and with leaseholders often a licence to alter.