Latest Legal News

COVID-19 and Parental Contact With Children in Care - Guideline Ruling

How, if at all, is the duty of local authorities to allow children in their care reasonable contact with their parents affected by social distancing rules arising from the COVID-19 pandemic? The Court of Appeal confronted that issue in a guideline case . ...

Which Nation's Laws Apply to International Flights - High Court Guidance

As international airline passengers lounge comfortably in their seats, the last thing on their minds may be the legal system that applies to the aircraft at any one time as it passes through the airspace of one nation after another. That question was,...

Judge Breaks Deadlock Between Unmarried Ex-Couple With Children

When long-term relationships between unmarried couples break down, disentangling their property and financial affairs can be challenging, particularly where children are involved. As one case showed, however, a clean break is often the best option for all...

High Court Overturns Planning Consent for Demolition of Pub Skittle Alley

Where local authorities choose not to follow the advice of their professional planning officers, the resulting decisions are likely to come under particularly close judicial scrutiny. That was certainly so in one case concerning a proposed development which...

Estate Agency Boss Handed Directorship Ban Over Price-Fixing Cartel

Where free markets fail to operate, individual consumers are bound to suffer. The lengths to which regulators will go in stamping out anti-competitive conduct, even at a local level, was underlined by a High Court case concerning a cartel between estate...

Cakes v Confectionery - Tribunal Laments Confused State of VAT Rules

In ruling that vegan sweet treats targeted at health food shops should be subject to VAT at the standard rate, the First-tier Tribunal (FTT) lamented the long-standing confusion in the law when it comes to distinguishing between confectionery and cakes. The...

Liquidators Act to Recover £7 Million Invested in Abortive Flats Development

Investing in property development projects is definitely not for the faint-hearted but, if things go wrong, professionals will help you to recoup as much of your money as possible. A case on point concerned about £7 million invested in a student flats...

Revolutionary Garden Hose Design Too 'Obvious' for Patent Protection

Patents reward originality, and inventions that are obvious developments on pre-existing designs do not qualify for protection, however successful they may be. In a ground-breaking case on point , patent protection was denied in respect of a one-man...

Don't Even Consider a Foreign Adoption Without Specialist Legal Advice

Adopting children from abroad can complete families and be of great benefit to all concerned. However, as a High Court case showed, it is fraught with legal pitfalls and should not be attempted without first taking specialist legal advice. The case...

High Court Rules on COVID-19 Insurance Test Case

In a welcome development for thousands of small businesses, the High Court has ruled that losses arising from the COVID-19 pandemic are covered by certain business interruption insurance policies. Many businesses have claimed on their business...

Can Contract Adjudications Be Fairly Held During COVID-19 Lockdown?

Speedy and cost-effective dispute resolution is the primary aspiration of the contract adjudication regime – but to what extent can that be fairly achieved during the COVID-19 pandemic? The High Court confronted that issue in a guideline case . A...

Council Awarded Seven-Figure Damages for Flaws in Tram Depot Design

Disputes concerning major construction projects can simmer on for years after they are completed and one of the great advantages of litigation is that it offers finality. In one case, the High Court achieved that end by awarding more than £1 million...

Dishonestly Misled Company Overturns £115,000 VAT Late Payment Penalties

Delaying payment of your quarterly VAT bills is no way to relieve pressure on your cash flow and usually results in heavy financial penalties. However, as a First-tier Tribunal (FTT) ruling showed, there is such a thing as a reasonable excuse for late...

Want to Adopt a Child From Overseas? Beware the Legal Pitfalls

Adopting children from overseas is fraught with legal pitfalls and those who attempt to do so without first taking expert advice expose themselves to heartbreak. In one case, however, the High Court came to the aid of a British woman who adopted a little...

Spotlight on Corporate Democracy as Small Shareholders Take Crushing Loss

Concerns that small shareholders are the victims of a deficit in corporate democracy, having little influence over the direction taken by the companies in which they invest, were highlighted by a High Court case concerning a troubled mining company. Tens of...

Fairness Demands Transparent Decision-Making - High Court Planning Case

Planning decisions can radically affect people's lives and livelihoods and that is why they have to be taken openly and transparently. The High Court made that point in overturning planning permission granted for a major redevelopment in a creative...

Prosecco Producers Successfully Oppose 'Nosecco' Trade Mark Registration

The names and trade marks of certain well-known regional food and drink products are tightly protected under European law. The extent of that protection was analysed in a High Court case concerning a non-alcoholic sparkling wine bearing the name 'Nosecco'....

Secret Marriage Leads to Legal Complications - High Court Ruling

It is not only in the realms of fiction that lovers choose to marry in secret, away from the gaze of their disapproving families. A highly unusual High Court case , however, showed the legal difficulties that can arise from such arrangements. The case...

When Does a Contract Dispute Crystallise? Guideline High Court Ruling

Contract adjudicators only have jurisdiction to resolve disputes after the points in issue have crystallised. The difficulty of discerning exactly when that point has been reached was underlined by a High Court case concerning a delayed laboratory...

Advance Contractual Payments and the Benefits of Bank Guarantees

Contracts often require payments for services to be made in advance in order to get the ball rolling and provide liquidity, but this gives rise to obvious risks. An instructive High Court ruling, however, showed how effective bank guarantees are in ensuring...

Unfair Advantage Being Taken of Your Trade Mark? Don't Put Up With It

If you have spent time and money building up public recognition of your trade mark, you do not have to just stand by and watch others taking unfair advantage of your investment. In a case on point, a tea supplier saw off an attempt to use its brand name in...

Divorce - Home-Maker Wife Compensated for Sacrificing Her Career

Despite the drive towards achieving economic equality between the sexes, it remains common for women to give up their promising careers to support their husbands and devote themselves to child rearing and home-making. An important High Court ruling ...

'Pay Now, Argue Later' - High Court Enforces Contract Adjudicator's Award

Contract adjudicators' awards, even if disputed, must generally be satisfied straight away. That principle – often referred to as 'pay now, argue later' – was applied by the High Court in ordering an immediate six-figure payment to a small...

Part-Time Football Referees Are Self-Employed, Tax Tribunal Rules

Part-time referees who officiate at professional football matches on a game-by-game basis are not employees. Confirming their self-employed status in a guideline case, the Upper Tribunal (UT) noted that they are so motivated to work that there is no need to...

Flat Tenant Can Veto Potentially Destructive Works - Supreme Court Ruling

The freeholds of a great many blocks of flats are held by tenant-owned companies which operate on democratic principles. Such arrangements are, however, not a panacea and disagreements can arise. A guideline Supreme Court decision will, however, make it...
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Nuisance Neighbours and Your Right of Way

It is not uncommon for neighbours with a shared right of way to be in dispute.

That could be the result of an annoying neighbour parking vans on a shared route into a commercial estate, or someone storing items blocking the path leading to your residential home. When you challenge the relevant individual, the answer invariably comes back: “It is my right of way too.”

Rather than out of sight, out of mind, these disputes are almost always in sight and on your mind, because you may see your neighbour every day. It is therefore essential to obtain quick, effective legal advice on your options so that the situation does not escalate or continue.

 If a neighbour is interfering with your right of way, the Court can generally award you one or more of the following remedies in a legal action known as “private nuisance.”

  1. An injunction forcing your neighbour to cease the relevant interference. If the neighbour breaches an injunction, they may have to pay a fine or could even go to prison.

 

  1. A declaration from the Court as to the extent of the right of way.

 

  1. Damages from the Court for any financial loss you have suffered as a result of the interference. This is especially essential for businesses who may suffer significant losses if they are unable to access their premises due to an interference with a right of way.

 

  1. The Court could grant you the power to lawfully remove an item blocking the right of way. This is a crucial remedy in circumstances where the relevant neighbour may not be engaging with the legal process.

 

However, in order for a private nuisance claim to succeed, you will need to demonstrate to the Court that the interference with your right of way is “substantial.” You will almost certainly need independent legal advice on whether your circumstances pass that threshold test.

If a neighbour or anyone else is interfering with your right of way, please don’t hesitate to contact our George Gwynn for an initial no obligation conversation on 0121 355 0011 or at George.Gwynn@belllax.com