Public liability on land adjoining a freehold property

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    Public liability on land adjoining a freehold property

    Mum is buying a bungalow built in somebody's back garden. There are 9 properties altogether and they are freehold.

    There is a resident's association and everyone pays into a public liability insurance for the unadopted tarmac access road.

    My question is this: Is it normal for properties in this situation to pay for public liability for land that is not theirs?

    I am also concerned that Mum might be partly responsible for repairs to the tarmac surface or other repairs such as to the utilities.

    I've tried to find the owner of the unadopted road on the Land Reg but have been unsuccessful.

    The tardiness of the solicitor is frustrating.

    edit: the road is unadopted but I think it might also be a private road as it's on a small estate of fairly newish properties. This leads me to believe it does belong to somebody.

    #2
    You should be concerned if you mother is not partially responsible for the upkeep of the road, and there is not a covenant to that effect noted on the title for the property.

    The land will have started off belonging to someone, although it may have reverted to the Crown. The Crown do not have to maintain land.

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      #3
      I've got this sorted - nearly. I would delete the post but I can't so here's the situation so far - just 4 of the residents own the private unadopted area and everyone chips in for the public liability. The 4 owners are responsible for any shortfall should there be a claim or repairs.

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        #4
        Thank you leaseholder64. There are some other issues however but I won't bore you with the details. Several small but important details need sorting. part of the problem is, I think, older people have bought properties on the estate and not questioned the issues I'm questioning so the info hasn't passed down the purchasers and their solicitors.

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          #5
          I think some councils are hard-up and have no budget to take on private roads.

          So these roads have to be maintained by the house owners on the estate.

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            #6
            Councils won't adopt roads unless they service a significant community. In the current climate, that road is never going to be adopted.

            Even if it were important enough to adopt, it would have to be brought up to council standards before it was adopted.

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              #7
              I don't think the council will ever adopt this private road. The road is private so the property owners aren't liable for the repairs as they would be if it was just unadpoted and not private. (I read the Highways Act).

              In the conveyance document dated 1977, so not that old, references are made to the Purchaser and the Vendor but as the doc continues from when the land was sold (it was part of a large back garden) to the Purchaser (Mr Builder of Houses) it was clear who the P and V were. But it gets confusing further down the doc. I went to see the solicitor today and she says she's waiting for clarification from my vendor's solicitors.

              Perhaps if I re-read the doc tomorrow I will understand it better - or maybe I just need a BIG GIN and then it will all make sense!

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