Rights of light can give a property owner the right to maintain a minimum level of light to their building.
Rights of light can arise by easement under the common law, by adverse possession or by the provisions of the Prescription Act 1832. They could potentially apply to anyone who has had uninterrupted use of a particular window or aperture for 20 years. There are various rules and conditions attached to this area and if you are in doubt as to whether you benefit from any rights of light you should seek the advice of an experienced rights of light solicitor.
If rights of light do exist and someone builds or increases the size of a building nearby thereby reducing the level of light you previously enjoyed there could be a cause of action and you could be entitled to compensation or a rights of light injunction to prevent the development.
If you think you might benefit from rights of light and you are concerned that a nearby development might affect the light your own property enjoys you should consult with a rights of light solicitor to investigate this and advise you of your options.
In many cases it is possible to negotiate a deed of release of rights of light whereby one party agrees to partially surrender their rights of light in return for compensation. If you have been offered such an agreement you should seek assistance from a rights of light solicitor to ensure that the deed of release is properly drafted and registered in order to protect your position.
Child & Child have a number of specialist rights of light solicitors with wide experience of court proceedings involving rights of light disputes, from numerous trials of domestic and commercial rights of light disputes in the county court to complex cases involving trials in the Chancery Division of the High Court and appeals to the Court of Appeal.