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Good fences make good neighbours

By Alden Ho - 27 Mar 2017

Do you know your rights under the Fencing Act? The Fencing Act covers a multitude of possible scenarios, including the commonly asked question of who should pay for a shared fence.

A shared fence is a fence which is on the common boundary between you and your neighbour. Such a fence must be reasonably satisfactory for the purpose that it is intended to serve.

If you and your neighbour cannot agree on who should pay for the fence, then the Fencing Act provides for a notice procedure which allows the party who wishes to build a fence to issue a "fencing notice" to the other. Among other things, the fencing notice must contain details of the type of fence, costs and materials to be used.

If the recipient fails to respond within 21 days then the recipient will be deemed to have agreed to the proposed fence and share in the cost. If there is still a dispute, then the matter will have to be progressed in the Disputes Tribunal or the District Court with each forum having their benefits and disadvantages.

We recognise that relationships between neighbours are important and it is easy for minor disputes to escalate out of control. This is why getting good advice from the start is essential.

Construction law specialists Geoff Hardy and Alden Ho have expertise in navigating all types of neighbourly disputes. If you require assistance on understanding your rights and obligations under the Fencing Act or other construction law issues, contact Geoff on 300 7613 or Alden on 300 7634 today.


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