China capital curbs reflect buyer’s remorse over market reforms

Last year the reformist head of China’s central bank convinced his Communist party bosses to give market forces a bigger say in setting the renminbi’s daily “reference rate” against the US dollar. In return, Zhou Xiaochuan assured his more conservative party colleagues that the redback would finally secure coveted recognition as an official reserve currency […]

Continue Reading

Capital Markets

Mnuchin expected to be Trump’s Treasury secretary

Donald Trump has chosen Steven Mnuchin as his Treasury secretary, US media outlets reported on Tuesday, positioning the former Goldman Sachs banker to be the latest Wall Street veteran to receive a top administration post. Mr Mnuchin chairs both Dune Capital Management and Dune Entertainment Partners and has been a longtime business associate of Mr […]

Continue Reading


Financial system more vulnerable after Trump victory, says BoE

The US election outcome has “reinforced existing vulnerabilities” in the financial system, the Bank of England has warned, adding that the outlook for financial stability in the UK remains challenging. The BoE said on Wednesday that vulnerabilities that were already considered “elevated” have worsened since its last report on financial stability in July, in the […]

Continue Reading


China stock market unfazed by falling renminbi

China’s renminbi slump has companies and individuals alike scrambling to move capital overseas, but it has not damped the enthusiasm of China’s equity investors. The Shanghai Composite, which tracks stocks on the mainland’s biggest exchange, has been gradually rising since May. That is the opposite of what happened in August 2015 after China’s surprise renminbi […]

Continue Reading


Hard-hit online lender CAN Capital makes executive changes

The biggest online lender to small businesses in the US has pulled down the shutters and put its top managers on a leave of absence, in the latest blow to an industry grappling with mounting fears over credit quality. Atlanta-based CAN Capital said on Tuesday that it had replaced a trio of senior executives, after […]

Continue Reading

Categorized | Property

Property law: neighbour in my parking space

Posted on September 23, 2016

Property law

I own a parking space in front of my townhouse, which I do not use. My neighbour has just bought a ghastly new Lamborghini and is parking it in my space without my permission. I’ve heard you can acquire rights to use a neighbour’s property like this. Is this correct?

There are several ways your neighbour could obtain a right over your property. These rights, known as “easements”, are usually created by a formal agreement between the landowners. However, third parties can also acquire easements without your permission, by what is known as “prescription”.

    What does that mean?

    To establish an easement by prescription, the right must have been exercised for at least 20 years uninterrupted, without force, without secrecy and without permission. If your neighbour continues to use your parking space and you do nothing to assert your exclusive right to use your property, this is a risk. Once established, the easement can be enforced in the courts and registered against your property’s title at the Land Registry. This means the right to use the space could be transferred to subsequent owners when your neighbour sells their property.

    What can I do to prevent this?

    It’s actually relatively simple. The recent case of Winterburn v Bennett confirmed that installing a clearly visible sign stating that the parking space is private property could be enough to demonstrate the use was not without force, and therefore prevent your neighbour from acquiring an easement.

    Sounds a little harsh. I don’t want to cause a rift with my neighbour.

    As you do not currently use the parking space, you could ask your neighbour if they will enter into a formal licence agreement to use it, perhaps charging them a small fee. Granting revocable permission like this would also prevent an easement being established.

    Alice Groom and Shona Ferguson, Farrer & Co. The legal issues in this column refer to England and Wales