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LawAccess NSW > Representing Yourself

Enforcing an agreement 

If you have an agreement about fencing work with your neighbour and your neighbour does not do what they have agreed to do in the agreement, it may be possible to enforce the agreement.

If you do not do what you have agreed to in the agreement, your neighbour may try and enforce the agreement against you.

    ​How can I clai​m m​oney I am owed?

    If you organise and pay for fencing work and your neighbour fails to pay you as agreed, you can make a claim in the Local Court for the amount owed. To make a claim you must complete a form called a Statement of Claim and pay a filing fee. A Statement of Claim sets out that someone owes you a debt. For more information, see Does someone owe you money? in the Debt - small claims topic.

    Alert Icon Any application to the Local Court must be made within six years of your neighbour breaking the agreement. Before making an application, you should get legal advice.

    Can my neighbour claim money from me?

    If your neighbour organises fencing work, and you fail to pay them as agreed, they can make a claim in the Local Court for the amount owed. If your neighbour does this you will be served with (given) a document called a Statement of Claim. For more information about responding to a Statement of Claim, see Is someone chasing you for money? in the Debt - small claims topic.

    Alert Icon Your neighbour must make the claim within six years of the agreement being broken. If you receive a Statement of Claim, you should get legal advice.

    How much can be claimed?

    If the agreement between you and your neighbour specified how much each of you would pay, a claim can be made for that amount.

    If your agreement did not specify how much each of you would pay, a claim can usually be made for half the cost of the fencing work carried out.

    Hint icon If you organised the fencing work, you should make sure that you keep copies of all your quotes and receipts so you can prove how much you spent on the fencing work.

    Alert Icon If you carry out fencing work, make sure that you only do what was agreed to. If there are any problems or defects with the fencing work, or you fail to do something you agreed on, you may be responsible.

    My neighbour agreed to organise and complete the fencing work but they did not. What are my options?

    If your neighbour agreed that they would organise or complete fencing work and they have failed to do so, you should get legal advice. This is a very complicated situation and your options will depend on whether you made the agreement with your neighbour after a Fencing Notice was served by either you or your neighbour.

    If you reached agreement with your neighbour after one of you served a Fencing Notice, it may be possible for you to go ahead and complete the fencing work that you agreed to (if it has not been organised or completed by your neighbour in the time agreed). If no time for finishing the work was agreed, you may be able to complete the work if it is more than three months since the agreement was made. Remember to get legal advice before starting any work.

    Once you have completed the fencing work, you can make a claim in the Local Court for the amount owed to you. To make a c​laim you must complete a form called a Statement of Claim and pay a filing fee. A Statement of Claim sets out that someone owes you a debt. For more information, see Does someone owe you money? in the Debt - small claims topic.

    Alert Icon Any application to the Local Court must be made within six years of your neighbour breaking the agreement. Before making an application, you should get legal advice.

    Alert Icon If you carry out fencing work, make sure that you only do what was agreed to. If there are any problems or defects with the fencing work, or you fail to do something you agreed on, you may be responsible.

    For answers to commonly asked questions, see ​Frequently Asked Questions​.

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    Further in​formation

    Local Courts NSW