The law has many nuances and can be highly complex in certain areas. Often it’s best to consult with a legal expert on many things, from property development to financial matters, to make sure you aren’t missing any details that could result in legal ramifications. Here’s what solicitors can do to help protect your rights.
Disputes With Neighbours
Neighbourly disputes can be difficult to litigate, so it helps to maintain an awareness of how things that you do affect those around you. This could be something simple such as keeping a respectful level of noise or it could get more complicated, for example a complication of developing or extending your property.
Right of Light
Being aware of right of light laws before you build any extension, structure or new property is important to prevent any possible disputes with neighbours. Not only could your new development lead to a dispute with a neighbour, but they could also claim damages if it infringes on their right to light.
Right of light laws refer to windows that have acquired the legal right to have light illuminating the room they are in. If a window has existed for around 20 years (19 years and 1 day is enough) then that window will have probably acquired the legal right to light – similar to right of way when driving.
This means if something like an extension to property blocks that light, the owner of the window can take action to either prevent that extension, have it taken down or claim damages. Right of light refers to the level of illumination of a room, rather than the entitlement to a nice view, so there are technicalities you need an expert to assess. This can usually be done by a surveyor, so if you’re making a new build, get a professional to investigate the area and make sure you aren’t likely to affect anyone.
Party walls refer to things like a brick wall that lands on a property boundary shared by two or more neighbours. This does not include wooden fences. The Party Wall Act 1996 was created in order to make the laws surrounding work and responsibilities on shared walls more clear.
It is best to discuss any planned work to these shared walls with your neighbour and an expert such as a solicitor or surveyor to make sure you’re not breaking any laws. Similarly, if a neighbour has carried out unauthorised work on your shared wall and you are concerned, speak to an expert to see if a solution can be found.
Legal advice can be sought out regarding mental health issues, such as if you or a family member is detained in hospital under the section 2 mental health act. Solicitors can help explain your rights and the processes of these kinds of mental health treatments, so you know what to expect. You can also get support and advice for appealing against the decision to be detained.
You may have seen adverts on television about injury lawyers. Solicitors can give advice and may be able to help you make a claim for a physical injury. If you’ve been involved in some sort of accident that wasn’t caused directly by you, it’s worth seeking legal advice. If it happened at a place of work, then they may be held responsible, and you could claim damages or at least get support.
Solicitors can also advise in cases of medical negligence. If something wasn’t diagnosed correctly or was caused by the failure to act properly during a medical emergency or procedure, then speak to an expert in medical law to see if you’re entitled to make a claim.
Hiring a Solicitor
You should consider consulting a solicitor for many issues, rather than going it alone. Their expert knowledge may help you find a better solution to your problems.
Solicitors can assist you with anything from moving house to planning for your death. Investing in a solicitor’s services can actually help you save and preserve money on many occasions, this could be during divorce, writing a will or when experiencing financial issues.
If you have a current issue you are trying to deal with, talk to a solicitor today.