Construction Friction: Suing a neighbor under 881

August 18, 2021 – Media Mention
PincusCo Media

Herrick partner and co-chair of the Litigation Department, Bill Fried, spoke to PincusCo Media about disputes between developers and neighbors during construction projects.

The article states, "In some of these cases, the neighbor refuses to allow the developer to set up legally required protections and so the developer turns to the courts, adding attorneys’ fees, time and uncertainty to the development process. The developer must file a petition through Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law, section 881, often referred to using its acronym, RPAPL § 881. Through such a petition, the developer seeks a license to enter on a neighbor’s property where it will install protective measures as required by the city’s building code."

Bill explained, "In almost every circumstance, the party bringing the 881 is going to get a license. The question is what are the parameters around the license[.]" He said that, generally, judges only delay a license when a developer has already damaged the neighbor’s property. He added, "I had a situation in which a party had done work, they got access and damaged the property," and further explained that then the judge wanted to make sure the property was repaired and make sure it would not happen again, before another license was hammered out.

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