Neighbour disputes can escalate quickly

Disputes or disagreements with our neighbours can affect us viscerally.  They challenge our sense of security, personal space.  They can also challenge our feelings of safety and bring up fears of economic insecurity.   It is very normal to take the situation very personally and therefore have strong reactions to the situation or person.  Equally the other person can have strong reactions to us and our behaviours.  When we are in close physical proximity to our neighbours, particularly during lockdown, these feelings and reactions can be exacerbated.  The fight as opposed to flight reaction sets in as there is no-where to go and the issues escalate.


Legal action takes time at the best of times.  During that time, tensions between neighbours escalate on a daily or even hourly basis.  Equally, the chances of succeeding in any given claim are only ever 70:30 at their best.  In other words, no-one is ever guaranteed to win a claim no matter how good their case is.  The same is true when applying to the Council to take action.  More importantly though, even if one party “wins”, neighbours often still have to live with each other and their relationship will continue to decline if one has won and the other has lost.


Mediations in neighbour disputes whether they are about money, property or relationships can be very quick to set up.  In some cases, it can take a couple of hours to resolve the issue and in others they can be resolved in a day.  Equally they can be relatively inexpensive costing anything from £100 to £3000.  They can often be set up within a week avoiding the uncertainty and anxiety that comes with delay. 


Even winning at court does not always provide an end to the dispute.  This is because often only some of the issues will be dealt with in court proceedings.  This issues that are not resolved often fester and develop into new disputes that leave neighbours in the position they started.  Mediation helps to address the range of issues that the dispute throws up.  It also creates buy in by the parties into the solution.  This is because the final agreement in a mediation is one created by the parties as opposed to being imposed.


Mediation does not need to happen face to face and often takes place on the telephone or via other video links.  The Mediation Protocol will ensure that a very similar experience can happen in a remote mediation as in a face to face session and any agreements are signed and managed carefully.  

If you are interested in finding out more about mediation or have questions, you can set up a confidential conversation with a mediator. You can invite the other party do the same and this allows them to see how mediation can help them as well as addresses concern. If you have questions, contact us we are always happy to talk a situation through.