Chapter 1: Introduction

Disputes between neighbours have become one of the most common forms of dispute. Although we generally can’t choose our neighbours it is in our best interests to try to get along, and when a problem arises, to do what we can to find a solution. After all, everyone benefits from having harmony in their neighbourhood.

As a contribution to good neighbour relations, this book sets out the law on a range of common neighbourhood problems. It outlines our legal rights and responsibilities as neighbours, options for action where there is a dispute and the various legal and non-legal remedies that are available. It begins with some basic handy hints on resolving a dispute and also includes hot tips to help explain legal terms, case studies, and references to relevant Acts and court decisions.  


The laws contained here are those that apply in New South Wales as at 1 January 2017. While every effort has been made to ensure the information is up-to-date and accurate, it is not a substitute for legal advice. Use this book as a guide only and wherever possible, get legal advice for your particular problem.

The Author

Nadine Behan BA LLB Grad Dip (Communication) worked for ten years as a barrister and solicitor at a community legal centre, specialising in non-criminal law. Her work involved conducting litigation, advising clients and supervising a legal advice clinic, which assisted people who were running their own cases. Nadine is also the author of How to run your own court case (Redfern Legal Centre Publishing). Nadine has one son and now lives and writes in Sydney.