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Is there a law saying you aren’t allowed to build on someone else’s land?

By beejay76 - 19 April 2011 72

We have a wee problem with a neighbour. They’ve built a deck that extends past their boundary and onto our land.

After the usual argy-bargy, we lodged a complaint with ACTPLA (at the advice of ACTPLA, mind you) only to be told that it’s outside their authority. This is apparently because the structure was exempt from a DA.

Does this mean that in the ACT if you build a structure that doesn’t require a DA you can build it wherever you like? Is the onus then on the lessee of that land to go through the expense of a civil action to make you remove it? That doesn’t sound at all right to me.

Does anyone out there know anything about this?

What’s Your opinion?

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72 Responses to
Is there a law saying you aren’t allowed to build on someone else’s land?
Gerry-Built 1:02 pm 19 Apr 11

the chainsaw option is going to do wonders for your relationship with your neighbour/s…

I can’t believe ACTPLA reckon this is out of their authority; whose do you need, the police? I’d be calling ACTPLA to ask for advice on what to do now… not a handful of ACT residents who jump straight to the chainsaw option – as amusing as that does sound πŸ˜‰

Of course, the Lt. Ripley method has it’s own attractions, too…

welkin31 1:00 pm 19 Apr 11

I would be very wary about starting the chainsaw unless you were “surveyor sure” where your boundary was.

colourful sydney rac 12:58 pm 19 Apr 11

In all seriousness, try and deal with the nieghbour directly, the last thing you want is to have a toxic relationship with the people you live next door to.

p1 12:58 pm 19 Apr 11

BlackIce said :

Well, if there’s a structure on your land, you can always use a chainsaw to remove it…

Is it a nice deck? You could always put a BBQ and some chairs on the bit on your side of the line, invite some friends over and have a party?

Thumper 12:54 pm 19 Apr 11

Invite twenty mates around, get a keg and have a BBQ on the part of the deck that is over your property.

Skidbladnir 12:50 pm 19 Apr 11

Encroachments between lesees of two seperate titles are a private matter, not ACTPLA.

Occupiers are responsible for care, or at least reasonably minimise the risk of injury, of anybody entering that land.
(IE: You can’t line your border with pitfalls, nor cover your section of the constructed deck with panji traps)

Keijidosha 12:49 pm 19 Apr 11

I don’t disagree with the consensus that chainsaw revenge is the ticket, but if you don’t have access to a saw, then I suggest you simply claim the section of deck on your property and use it for your own purposes. Perhaps a quiet place to defecate every morning before breakfast?

troll-sniffer 12:46 pm 19 Apr 11

Might be a case to make some of your rates money back. Assess the total percentage of your block that has been rendered unusable for your own purposes (all aesthetic and privacy concerns included) and offer to lease the affected area for a goodly percentage of your annual rates bill.

Oh and while we’re there, how about a photo of the transgression?

colourful sydney rac 12:29 pm 19 Apr 11

I suggest you take off and nuke the site from orbit, it’s the only way to be sure.

molongloid 12:27 pm 19 Apr 11

How far past? Get a proper survey done and make allowance for error, i.e. be conservative. Be assertive, but don’t just go ahead and cut. In a matter-of-fact manner, with evidence in hand, advise neighbour. This is a technical issue that can be fixed by doing remedial work that can leave the neighbour with a decent deck and you with your land. Clearly the neighbour needs to pay for the work, but if they don’t wat to then they need to understand that the alternative is a fe minutes of chainsaw.

PBO 11:57 am 19 Apr 11

Then get rid of it.

Treat it like an overhanging branch and cut it down.

If it is on your property then you are free to do what you like to maintain the longterm, aesthetic nature of your property. If the ACTPLA say that it is not their issue then you go to town son.

BlackIce 11:55 am 19 Apr 11

Well, if there’s a structure on your land, you can always use a chainsaw to remove it…

Smelly 11:52 am 19 Apr 11

Trim the deck like an over hanging branch. Use a chainsaw.

Solidarity 11:49 am 19 Apr 11

They built on your land, hence you can remove it from your land, right?

c` 11:42 am 19 Apr 11


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