Considers the reasons for the invalidity of party wall awards. Examines decided cases under earlier party wall legislation in the context of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996. Explains invalidity on the basis of an excess of the surveyors’ statutory authority. Defines this authority in terms of jurisdiction and power. Demonstrates the limits of the surveyors’ authority and emphasises the importance of strict compliance with statutory procedures. Concludes that surveyors should adopt an inquisitive and analytical approach to the scope of their authority to avoid the possibility of invalid awards. Echoes John Anstey’s earlier warning that surveyors should avoid a broad‐brush approach to their duties which will only leave them “covered in soot”.
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