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what to do if neighbour has japanese knotweed

December 22, 2020 0 Comments

It is best to identify and treat Japanese knotweed as soon as possible as this not only leads to a faster resolution but is more cost effective. After all, very few purchasers would be prepared to purchase a property under threat from this destructive plant and if they were prepared to accept the risk, inevitably they would do so at a discount. This has been a thorny issue for some time, and it can cause rifts between otherwise friendly neighbours. Japanese knotweed requires professional treatment, either with herbicide over two to three years or by excavation. Ms Line’s line of defence was that she had done everything possible to stop the spread through maintenance and herbicides. They are not next door, but we … Start amicably and mention the situation to your neighbour, who may not be aware of the issues relating to the plant. If you have Japanese growing in your garden, here's what to know: How to recognise Japanese knotweed . It is an offence, under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, to plant or cause Japanese Knotweed to grow in the wild.If you do, you may find yourself landed with a fine of up to £5,000 and possibly even a prison sentence. This interference was caused by a feature of the defendant’s land, the knotweed that she was allegedly failing to control. Landowners can now claim damages if Japanese knotweed has encroached on their property following a Court of Appeal ruling in favour of two householders whose properties were affected by the plant. What to do if a neighbour has Japanese Knotweed If there is Japanese Knotweed on adjoining land, there are several things you can do. It is similar to Japanese knotweed in many respects but is larger, growing over 4m high and having leaves around 20-40cm long. We do not treat knotweed on land not owned by the council and you will need to contact the relevant land owner. If even a small piece of root is left in the ground, it can quickly re-infest the land. The court ruled in favour of the claimants. What if Japanese knotweed encroaches on your land? Physical damage to buildings and land. Designed by Send us some photos of the suspected Japanese knotweed, and we will identify the plant for you, let us put your mind at ease. Criminal and civil liabilities for owners, occupiers and any person dealing with knotweed who fail to do so in accordance with the law. What happens if my neighbour has Japanese knotweed? The law around Japanese Knotweed changed in 2014. If your neighbour has allowed knotweed to spread into your garden, you should tell them about this. If you are experiencing problems relating to Japanese knotweed on neighbouring land, we can help. The decision follows a similar case in 2017 (Williams v Network Rail Infrastructure Ltd [2017]). What to do if neighbour has Japanese knotweed. If they … Japanese knotweed infestation can seriously damage the value of your property, so it's not an issue to be taken lightly. However, you should report certain non-native species on the Non-native Species Secretariat (NNSS) website. If they are reluctant, simply explain the damage it can do to their property and recommend they research it themselves. If you suspect your neighbour has Japanese knotweed next door, quick action can lead to an effective solution and … You can report Japanese knotweed growing on neighbouring council land by contacting your local authority directly. REMEMBER, many people do not know what Japanese Knotweed is, or the problems associated with it, so approaching your neighbour in a polite and respectful manner in the first instance is sound advice. Read on to find out what to do about Japanese knotweed in neighbour’s gardens… You’re trying to sell your house, the pressure is on but everything is going smoothly until… the valuation surveyor points to a plant in the neighbour’s garden and utters the words, ‘Japanese knotweed’. They found knotweed was an actionable nuisance before it caused physical damage on neighbouring land because of the harmful effect on the land’s value. Several actions can be taken if the normal neighbourly channels of communication fail. If you believe that your neighbour has Japanese knotweed & that it is spreading in to your garden. Most of the time your neighbour may not have identified the Japanese knotweed and therefore may not be aware of the trouble it can cause. Stephen Williams and Robin Waistell, neighbours in Maesteg, South Wales, made a claim against Network Rail – which owns land immediately behind their properties – because Japanese knotweed … What to do if your neighbour has Japanese knotweed? So could you provide your neighbour with an incentive get the Knotweed removed? You can also look for compensation from the solicitor who handled the sale or even the surveyor if they failed to identify the presence of Japanese knotweed when they carried out the survey. In winter the plant dies back to ground level but by early summer the bamboo-like stems emerge from rhizomes deep underground to shoot to over 2.1m (7ft), suppressing all other plant growth. See also: My neighbour has Japanese knotweed - what should I do? They can be liable, however, should they allow the knotweed to spread onto neighbouring land. Even in cases where no actual physical damage has been caused, the court decision opens up claims by neighbours for loss of amenity value due to the hazard created by the mere presence of … The law on Japanese knotweed differs depending on whereabouts in the UK you live. Get in touch with the Environmental Agency: if the Japanese Knotweed has spread over into your garden, your neighbour is liable to pay for the costs of remediation. Do … This also includes responsibilities for the proper disposal of any Japanese knotweed material removed from your land. Without causing a dispute, highlight why Japanese knotweed is a problem. What to do if a neighbour has Japanese knotweed? VAT No 613 3482 62, The legal implications of Japanese Knotweed in a neighbour's garden. Copyright ©2020 What happens if my neighbour has Japanese knotweed? Q My neighbour has recently discovered Japanese knotweed growing in their garden. There's no-one to report it to. This notice can require them, within a set period, to remedy any knotweed which could adversely affect the amenity of an area. Plus, as with the above case, it can cause upset between neighbours! WHAT TO DO IF NEIGHBOUR HAS JAPANESE KNOTWEED Towards the end of 2017, a homeowner took his neighbour in Cornwall to Court, alleging Japanese knotweed had been allowed to … Ms Line was ordered to employ a contractor over the next five years to eradicate the weed, as well as pay substantial legal costs, believed to run into tens of thousands of pounds. As a result, a property affected by Japanese knotweed, whether it is in their boundary or within 7 meters, loses value. Start amicably and mention the situation to your neighbour, who may not be aware of the issues relating to the plant. Where it is on land owned by the council, we will include it in our treatment programme. OakHouse Professional. This has been a thorny issue for some time, and it can cause rifts between otherwise friendly neighbours. We know this can be a problem, but we can't afford not to sell. They can be liable, however, should they allow the knotweed to spread onto neighbouring land. Towards the end of 2017, a homeowner took his neighbour in Cornwall to Court, alleging Japanese knotweed had been allowed to spread from the neighbouring property to his own, and that this had reduced the value of their home by £50,000 (10%) – he won! The hostile plant can cause a range of headaches for landowners, including: An owner or occupier of land is not obliged to control, remove or treat Japanese knotweed on their land. Do not take legal action until you have let them know about the issue, as they may not be aware. What to do if your neighbour’s land has Japanese Knotweed? It could be that they haven’t identified the Japanese Knotweed … Am I liable? It held that the defendant was liable in common law nuisance for a 10% diminution in value of the claimants' property. Eradication requires determination as it is very hard to remove by hand or eradicate with chemicals. By law, your neighbour does have a duty to ensure the weed doesn’t spread onto your property, but they do not have to eradicate it from their own home should they not wish to do so. As with many plants, Japanese knotweed appearance changes with the seasons. As with Japanese knotweed it was brought to Europe to be grown in botanical gardens. Japanese Knotweed Expert – Japanese Knotweed Removal and Eradication Japanese knotweed is often described as being like an iceberg as the roots can spread for several metres underground, therefore the chances of it reaching your property from a neighbouring property are very high. Don't spend money that you don't have to. Japanese knotweed monitoring programmes. Do not take legal action until you have let them know about the issue, as they may not be aware. If you suspect your neighbour has Japanese knotweed next door, quick action can lead to an effective solution and minimise cost, damage and headaches along the way. This information applies to England, where we are based, Wales and Northern Ireland. Japanese knotweed is similar to any other weed – it is best treated in the spring and summer, when the rain is less likely to wash away any herbicide-based treatment.Excavation can be carried out year-round, if the location of the weed has been established. Furthermore Japanese Knotweed is not cited under any legislation requiring it to be notified. What are the implications of this for my property?A Japanese knotweed is an invasive plant species, not native to the If your neighbour’s land has Japanese Knotweed that encroaches onto your land, you may have an actionable negligence claim if they are not removing or treating the plant. What you can do if a neighbour's bonfire is annoying you; Has it ever gone to court? The decisions in the highlighted cases show the Courts appear to be adopting an approach that a landowner who does not treat or remove Japanese knotweed on their land can be found liable to their neighbours. Report Japanese Knotweed. However, if it starts to encroach upon your property they are causing a private nuisance and therefore are open to court action. Even if no damage or growth of the plant occurs on the neighbour’s land, owners or occupiers could still be at risk through the reduction in the value of their neighbour’s land. The claim was rooted in the law of nuisance - the growth of the knotweed, the Claimants argued, was a substantial or unreasonable interference with their land. Japanese Knotweed Encroachment. If they do not agree to arrange for a treatment programme to be carried out, you may be able to bring a claim in nuisance against them. Local councils only get involved if it's growing on their land. There are several incidents of people successfully suing adjacent land owners for damage caused by Japanese Knotweed where the losing party has had to pay to have the plant removed and root barriers installed along the … In addition, Local Authorities have the power to serve notice on an occupier of land containing knotweed. What to do if a neighbour has Japanese Knotweed If there is Japanese Knotweed on adjoining land, there are several things you can do. You do not have to treat Japanese knotweed if you find it on your property. This can affect the value of the property, as well as its marketability and insurability; The expense and time required to eradicate, often requiring specialist help to treat the plant; The government has estimated the costs of eradicating all Japanese Knotweed from the UK is £2.6 billion; Harm biodiversity by outcompeting other species of plants and animals; and. The final step would be a small claims court but ideally, it wouldn’t reach this stage. It’s always better to try to get the neighbour on your side by explaining the benefits to them of getting a Japanese knotweed control programme put in place. If a property is found to have an infestation of Japanese knotweed on their land or Japanese knotweed within 7 meters, it is extremely difficult to secure a mortgage against the property. Based in Harrogate & Leeds: Berwins Solicitors, 2 North Park Road, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 5PA, Berwins is the trading name of Berwins Solicitors Limited registered in Neighbour’s Japanese Knotweed Has Caused My Floor To Fall In But I Don’t Want To Litigate (Wales) Civil Issues. Local councils are subject to the same knotweed laws as any other organisation, therefore they are prohibited to allow Japanese knotweed … Notify your neighbours about Japanese Knotweed. All rights reserved. If you need more advice on this issue, contact us, or refer to the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. We would always recommend you approach your neighbour before starting legal proceedings to discuss the situation with them and attempt to reach a resolution. Yes you can take action against your neighbour (though discussing and being reasonable about this is a preferred option) and yes – you can make them pay to get the plant removed. Take a look at our step-by-step guide for what to do next. damages for loss of enjoyment and diminution of value. The links we've given do have information about knotweed on neighbouring properties. What followed was a 15-year dispute between the neighbours as the knotweed grew closer to the claimant’s land. This case involved a group of homeowners in Wales who took action against Network Rail after Japanese knotweed grew into their gardens from an adjoining railway, albeit without causing any damage to their properties. If you are successful in bringing a Nuisance Claim against a defendant, … Does Japanese knotweed in my neighbour’s garden affect my home’s value? Ask … Any owner or occupier dealing with Japanese knotweed would be well advised to seek specialist help. Q My boyfriend and I purchased a house in east London this year. How to dispose of Japanese knotweed You could be fined up to £5,000 or be sent to prison for up to 2 years if you allow contaminated soil or … If you bring claim in nuisance, you can obtain an order making them carry out a treatment programme. Failure to abide by this or to properly dispose of the knotweed (such as discarding it in the wild) can lead to criminal liabilities. This should be … The truth is, Japanese knotweed can cost you money, space and your health. authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority number You are not under any legal obligations to remove knotweed from your own property (although it is advised) but the moment it encroaches upon your neighbour’s land or affects natural wildlife you are in violation of the law.This could potentially lead to prosecution, fines, or even imprisonment for up to two years. Heavy machinery is required and the plant can regrow from a piece of rhizome as small as a fingernail! A root barrier membrane can also be used to encapsulate Japanese Knotweed where space does not allow burial. If they do not arrange to have the Japanese knotweed treated and allow the Japanese knotweed to spread to your land, then you may able to bring a claim against them. Japanese knotweed monitoring programmes. & The government states "You do not need to notify anyone about the invasive plants on your land. Call PBA Solutions now on 0203 174 2187 for expert advice and to book a site survey. Japanese knotweed can be mistakenly identified as other similar plants, such as Russian vine or Himalayan Honeysuckle, but it can cause a lot more damage than these plants. The roots can extend to a depth of three metres and up to seven metres laterally. An owner or occupier of land is not obliged to control, remove or treat Japanese knotweed on their land. Japanese Knotweed was brought to the United Kingdom in the 19th century after the plant was discovered in Japan growing on the side of volcanoes. If there is a general reluctance, it is important to make your case clear and the list … Keep potential knotweed drama to a minimum with a Japanese knotweed monitoring programme from Taylor Total Weed Control. The case went before a Judge in October last year, with the ruling being published this month. If damage has already been done to your property your insurance company may be able to help and they may offer legal advice too. Do not seek legal action straight away as your neighbour may not be aware of the issue. England with number 06874412 at 2 North Park Road Harrogate HG1 5PA and By law, your neighbour does have a duty to ensure the weed doesn’t spread onto your property, but they do not have to eradicate it from their own home should they not wish to do so. This should be enough to encourage them to take action. Japanese knotweed ( Fallopia japonica ) is a weed that spreads rapidly. According to a recent Court of Appeal ruling, landowners are now able to claim damages if the identified Japanese knotweed plant has invaded their property from elsewhere, which won’t leave you out of pocket. Councils are only required to treat Knotweed on their own land. If a property is found to have an infestation of Japanese knotweed on their land or Japanese knotweed within 7 metres, it is extremely difficult to secure a mortgage against the property. At the time they were unaware that destructive Japanese Knotweed was growing on a neighbouring property owned by the defendant (Ms Line). 510280. It has also escaped into the wild where it is spreading. We are worried about our neighbour’s Japanese Knotweed plant spreading Invasive species will spread through walls, drains and foundations and can very quickly become a major infestation If the Japanese knotweed has been present since you bought the property you may be able to seek compensation from the seller if they did not mention this within their seller’s information form. You should consult with your neighbour about how they plan to deal with the Japanese knotweed issue. Network Rail is appealing this decision. ... and worst of all, Japanese knotweed which is close to 10ft in places and overhangs our garden. The claimants, (Mr and Mrs Smith) purchased a seaside property 15 years ago. Japanese Knotweed in neighbours garden. When it became apparent to the Smiths that Ms Line was not going to take the steps they required to remove the knotweed, they issued court proceedings. The neighbour hasn't committed a legal offense unless they actually planted the knotweed. For information for Scotland, please visit the Scottish Government’s website. In short, if it can be proved that the knotweed growing stemmed from an adjoining property, that homeowner … Just as the title states, I own a three story shop on a main road, I don’t use the shop or the 1st floor flat (other than to store things) and I live in the 2nd floor flat. However, you do have a responsibility to ensure that it doesn’t spread from your land to adjacent property. If your neighbour has Japanese knotweed on their property, they are under no legal obligation to remove Japanese knotweed from their own property. Whilst cautious not to cause a dispute, identify … The claimants asserted their loss was caused by the presence of the weed which could knock 10% (£50,000) off the value of the beach-side family home. The neighbour could then issue private nuisance proceedings in the Civil Courts for: As the case of Adam Smith and Eleanor Smith v Rosemary Line demonstrates there is also a significant risk that even if the knotweed does not spread onto the neighbour’s land, the owner may still be liable to the diminution in value of the neighbour’s land for the knotweed simply being in the vicinity. Initially valued for its beauty, opinion changed when it was discovered the extensive and fast-growing roots can have catastrophic consequences on a building’s drains and foundations. If your neighbour has Japanese knotweed, then you should tell them as soon as possible. This is called diminution of value. If they are reluctant, simply explain the damage it can do to their property and recommend they research it themselves. Most surveyors are now aware of the problems with Japanese Knotweed and much of the hysteria has calmed down meaning that common sense and careful management of the issues can resolve any potential for conflict. Ask if they could seek professional advice for the problem. Who cares whether or not there's a specific type of plant in my garden?' The short answer is no. Chris Langford is a Trainee Solicitor within Berwins' commercial litigation team. What should I do if my neighbour has Japanese Knotweed? Failing this, a solicitor and an invasive weed specialist such as ourselves will be able to assist you in getting a solution. . We finally lost patience two years ago and reported the issue to the council who served a notice on the owner. If you think that your neighbour has Japanese knotweed you should alert them as soon as possible as it can cause serious damage to their property and the environment. If you are concerned about Japanese Knotweed on land in Salford let us know. Japanese knotweed infestation can seriously damage the value of your property, so it's not an issue to be taken lightly. Disputes between neighbours are a common occurrence, can arise for many reasons and can permanently sour relations between previously amicable neighbours. The invasive plants on your land adversely affect the amenity of an area research it.! Ask if they are causing a private nuisance and therefore are open to court action it! Are causing a private nuisance and therefore are open to court action issues relating to knotweed. In addition, Local Authorities have the power to serve notice on an occupier land. The council and you will need to notify anyone about the invasive plants your. 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