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Own a Driveway But Park on Road: What's the Law?

By: Sarah Clark (ILEX) - Updated: 19 Feb 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Own A Driveway But Park On Road: What's The Law?

Q.

Our neighbours have a perfect driveway but they don't use it, instead choosing to park on the road outside their house. They don't even park in front of their driveway. This causes many problems for the rest of the people in our road as it's a small road with not many parking spaces. We have problems parking and find it very hard to park at night! Is there a law which says that if you have a driveway that you can use that you should use it?

(K.G, 20 July 2009)

A.

Parking is a common source of tension between neighbours, especially when these days many households have more than one car to park and limited parking spaces in which to do so. It can be irritating when a neighbour seemingly uses up more than their entitlement of parking spaces, and it’s clearly inconsiderate of your neighbour to choose to park on the road when they have a perfectly adequate parking space on their driveway.

Unfortunately, there is no legal entitlement for a resident to be able to park outside their home – even though most of us expect to be able to do so. Difficulties with parking close to your own property sometimes lead to Disputes Between Neighbours.

What the Law Says about Parking on a Public Highway

The law doesn’t set down any rules about where you can park if the road in question is a public highway. If your neighbour's vehicle is taxed and he is abiding by the Highway Code, then he can effectively park his car anywhere that he chooses on a public highway (although not on footpaths/pavements) as long as it is legal to park there.

Paragraph 207 of the Highway Code does say that people should not park anywhere that their vehicle might cause an obstruction to pedestrians or road users, and does also give an example of not parking in front of another person’s driveway – but it doesn’t actually say that you can’t park in front of another person’s driveway or property.

The Law Versus Etiquette

So, your neighbour probably isn’t actually breaking any laws by choosing to park in front of your property, however inconvenient it may be to you. Etiquette suggests that most people will choose to use their own driveway or park in front of their own property, but nobody has the automatic right to park right in front of their own house. All your neighbour appears to be breaching, in this case, is neighbourly etiquette.

If the problem persists, a friendly request to your neighbour to consider parking on their driveway could be the way forward, but there is nothing that can legally be done to force them to do so.

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Dawn- Your Question:
My neighbours have asked us not to drive on the pavement in front of their house as they will have to pay for any damage to the pavement. We park partially over the pavement in front of our own house, but use the dip on the curb outside theirs to get up the pavement outside ours. Is it true they would have to pay for damage? They nit-pick all the time so I'm sure this is rubbish.

Our Response:
Well yes probably, as they would have paid for the dropped kerb to be installed initially.
ProblemNeighbours - 22-Feb-17 @ 12:05 PM
My neighbours have asked us not to drive on the pavement in front of their house as they will have to pay for any damage to the pavement. We park partially over the pavement in front of our own house, but use the dip on the curb outside theirs to get up the pavement outside ours. Is it true they would have to pay for damage? They nit-pick all the time so I'm sure this is rubbish.
Dawn - 19-Feb-17 @ 7:31 PM
may.s - Your Question:
My neighbour is parking his coneworx roadwork lorry right on the pavement outside my front gate,completely blocking access to my front door,I don't drive or have a drive way,its actually my door way path I can't use,this is stopping me from being able to have my disabled partner from staying as I cant get her chair in or out,we have to lift it over a neighbours fence,the same with my garden bin for recycling. I am in poor health and my immediate neighbour who is also being affected is severely disabled,we have tried the police,council and asking him to move it nicely,but unfortunately he seems to be a bit of a bully who enjoys this awful situation. At Xmas my other neighbour actually took a ministroke and the ambulance crew were furiously trying to gain access to the front path and couldn't thanks to this lout,I believe that they reported his coneworx lorry,number 95,for those interested to police Scotland and his employer,but we are still being boxed in so who knows. Hope someone from Coneworx,Scotland reads this,awful person working for them

Our Response:
The police should surely do something about this? Did the ambulance crew make a complaint to the police after the incident you mention?
ProblemNeighbours - 6-Feb-17 @ 2:08 PM
My neighbour is parking his coneworx roadwork lorry right on the pavement outside my front gate,completely blocking access to my front door,I don't drive or have a drive way,its actually my door way path I can't use,this is stopping me from being able to have my disabled partner from staying as I cant get her chair in or out,we have to lift it over a neighbours fence,the same with my garden bin for recycling. I am in poor health and my immediate neighbour who is also being affected is severely disabled,we have tried the police,council and asking him to move it nicely,but unfortunately he seems to be a bit of a bully who enjoys this awful situation. At Xmas my other neighbour actually took a ministroke and the ambulance crew were furiously trying to gain access to the front path and couldn't thanks to this lout,I believe that they reported his coneworx lorry,number 95,for those interested to police Scotland and his employer,but we are still being boxed in so who knows. Hope someone from Coneworx,Scotland reads this,awful person working for them
may.s - 4-Feb-17 @ 2:37 AM
I live in a lane which has only one way access, there is parking assigned to all the houses in the lane, at the moment someone has parked a horse box outside their house, but it blocks half of the road with no access to fire engines ambulances or anything bigger than a car. What are our rights to have it removed. We all have a space with our house no on it.
jacquie - 18-Jan-17 @ 1:08 PM
My neighbours fence ( legally hers ) is in disrepair but it is now falling onto our smaller decking fence and is causing damage to it . I have asked my neighbour to repair it but she says she won't what can I do about damage to my fence and is she liable for damage to our property
Jb - 12-Jan-17 @ 12:50 PM
My neighbours fence ( legallyhers ) is in disrepair but it is now falling onto out smaller decking fence and is causing damage to it . I have asked my neighbour to repair it but she says she won't what can I do about damage to my fence
Jb - 12-Jan-17 @ 12:39 PM
Hi I wanted some legal advice about a confrontation that happened to me to day. My daughters school is on a veryBusy street and I wanted to turn around so are used a residential carpark to do so but then as very rude man came out of his house and parked in the road so I could not get by.He insisted on staying there for as long as possible until I became agitated after 20 minutes of waiting he then approached my vehicle and told me it is a private road that he owns and I'm not allowed to use it to turn around and he continued to be very rude and in doing so upset my children in the car at present.I apologise to Him just so he would move his car but hecontinued to be very threatening, does he have the right to do this and if not what do I do?
Ksm - 8-Dec-16 @ 9:19 AM
I live on ground that is lower than the neighbour who had then also raised his ground level to 3 foot higher, so he parks his truck so that his windscreen is looking through over into my front windows. Not matter what I tried to put to cover there, he will move his windscreen further and further. Also he has installed street lights that up his drive an higher level so there are on all night an light up the drive completely there and light up the front of my house and into my windows because I am lower down in the level. This was a complexly dark rural areas and now all night alongside my home is light up by his? Can you suggest anything?
jack - 3-Dec-16 @ 3:45 PM
Rosie - Your Question:
I am buying a new home. Two weeks off completion. Then the builder told me they have "mistakenly" erected my boundary fence a metre into my garden according to my deeds and title documents. However they have approached the neighbour behind who has benefitted from this for almost 3 years and despite having a garage uses this extra peice of land to park another car.its clear from the drawings and plans he was meant to have a narrow strip to access his back garden instead he has this piece of my garden to park another vehicle.He has told the developer he won't give it back.i do understand his feelings but he doesn't own it?My solicitor says it's clear he doesn't own it ,hasn't paid for it ,its on my deeds so effectively Ime paying for it and he is using it.He says they should send a notice letter to say they are moving the fence if he wants to contest at his own expense up to him but he hasn't any legal rights.Hate this, no wish to upset a neighbour it's a mess not of my making. Holding up my move but I need to sort or it will cause issues further down the line should I sell? Any ideas on this or how strong my position is!? Total mess!

Our Response:
The developer (selling you the property) should help more on this...as you say, it's not a problem of your making. As your neighbour has not been using the land for long he cannot claim Adverse Possession . Unfortunately if you do not raise any objections to his using it at the present time, you may be making more problems for yourself and a future buyer unless they're also willing to accept the situation as it stands.
ProblemNeighbours - 29-Nov-16 @ 12:47 PM
I am buying a new home. Two weeks off completion. Then the builder told me they have "mistakenly" erected my boundary fence a metre into my garden according to my deeds and title documents. However they have approached the neighbour behind who has benefitted from this for almost 3 years and despite having agarage uses this extra peice of land to park anothercar. its clear from the drawings and plans he was meant to have a narrow strip to access his back garden instead he has this piece of my garden to park another vehicle. He has told the developer he won't give it back.i do understand his feelings but he doesn't own it? My solicitor says it's clear he doesn't own it ,hasn't paid for it ,its on my deeds so effectively Ime paying for it and he is using it. He says they should send a notice letter to say they are moving the fence if he wants to contest at his own expense up to him but he hasn't any legal rights. Hate this, no wish to upset a neighbour it's a mess not of my making. Holding up my move but I need to sort or it will cause issues further down the line should I sell? Any ideas on this or how strong my position is!? Total mess!
Rosie - 28-Nov-16 @ 3:57 PM
We live on the end of a culdesac and over the road the house has a garage facing n directly on the road side,opposite my house,when he's coming in and out his head lights shine directly into my front window,and when we park our car he blocks us in,what can we do
Minnie - 26-Nov-16 @ 7:05 PM
Hi I park my car where my dad lives.However, My car is not registered there but I am the only one who looks after him and help him with daily basis.I believe I have a right to park there because as like other tenants, we have one car parking placeso I am just parking to his parking place. I had an argument one of his neighbor about parking my car.Can anyone tell me what legally action Required to take to get rid of her? Do I need to change my registration address for the car? Thanks
Zulu - 3-Nov-16 @ 9:14 PM
We have a driveway and two cars we park one car on driveway and one car directly behind we have never had an issue until late our new neighbours decided to park behind my second car up on the pavement on the corner. We are a no through road. Is he allowed to park on the pavement?
Di - 15-Oct-16 @ 1:19 PM
Lizz - Your Question:
We have two cars and due to our high usage of both we park one car on our drive and one in front of the electrical box next door or a little further up along a fence. This space is on the road opposite my neighbours garages. We were told by our neighbour that they wanted us to park only infront of the electrical box. When we did this they then told us we could not even park there as they struggled to park in their many garages. We ignored this last request as we felt it unfair and unsuitable to our needs. They have reported us to the police as nuisance neighbours! Is there anything we can do as this is bordering on harassment and seems unfair we have been reported. Help please.

Our Response:
If you feel you are parking considerately and are not causing an obstruction then the police will not be able to do anything about this. Just state your case to the police, to be honest it's unlikely they'll even follow up on it.
ProblemNeighbours - 6-Oct-16 @ 12:01 PM
We have two cars and due to our high usage of both we park one car on our drive and one in front of the electrical box next door or a little further up along a fence. This space is on the road opposite my neighbours garages. We were told by our neighbour that they wanted us to park only infront of the electrical box. When we did this they then told us we could not even park there as they struggled to park in their many garages. We ignored this last request as we felt it unfair and unsuitable to our needs. They have reported us to the police as nuisance neighbours! Is there anything we can do as this is bordering on harassment and seems unfair we have been reported. Help please.
Lizz - 4-Oct-16 @ 9:03 PM
Brad - Your Question:
Hi, I live on a road of terraced cottages in a built up area. The road is straight, but my neighbour (who I also share access to a driveway with) parks 6, yes, 6 of his vehicles out on the road. He also has a further 3 in the driveway, which is in disrepair because of the vehicles he uses. All are taxed and insured, so legally I dont think he's doing anything lawfully wrong. But there are probably 25 houses down this street who are able to use parking outside. Not all do drive, yet he still parks all his vehicles out in the front when he's the only one with a driveway to accommodate such things. I have tried THREE times now about the situation and he just becomes aggressive and ignorant to the situation. What should I do now?

Our Response:
What is the reason for his owning so many vehicles? There may not be much you can do about the parking if he's parking legally but if he's running a business or any kind of commercial operation, your council's planning officer may be able to take action.
ProblemNeighbours - 4-Oct-16 @ 11:40 AM
Hi, I live on a road of terraced cottages in a built up area. The road is straight, but my neighbour (who I also share access to a driveway with) parks 6, yes, 6 of his vehicles out on the road. He also has a further 3 in the driveway, which is in disrepair because of the vehicles he uses. All are taxed and insured, so legally I dont think he's doing anything lawfully wrong. But there are probably 25 houses down this street who are able to use parking outside. Not all do drive, yet he still parks all his vehicles out in the front when he's the only one with a driveway to accommodate such things. I have tried THREE times now about the situation and he just becomes aggressive and ignorant to the situation. What should I do now?
Brad - 3-Oct-16 @ 6:32 PM
rachy - Your Question:
I live on a corner my my neighbour has a drive way. he parks one car on there and his lodger parks in front of his drive and the owner`s car in front of my gate. ( I dont have a drop kerb) I feel trapped this is causing an obstruction. is there anything I can do about this. my mum cant visit shes in a wheel chair and cant get into my gate. thank you.

Our Response:
If this parking is actually blocking pedestrian access for wheelchair or pram users then the police will be able to take action. If the neighbour/lodger is simply parking on the road in front of your home and you do not have a dropped kerb/driveway, there is very little that you can do about it.
ProblemNeighbours - 27-Sep-16 @ 12:28 PM
i live on a corner my my neighbour has a drive way. he parks one car on there and hislodger parks in front of his drive and the owner`s car in front of my gate . ( i dont have a drop kerb) i feel trapped this is causing an obstruction. is there anything i can do about this.my mum cant visit shes in a wheel chair and cant get into my gate. thank you.
rachy - 26-Sep-16 @ 10:29 AM
Sue - Your Question:
Hi I run the restaurant business in a small parade. My Italian neighbour has got his dropped kerbs infront of his shop. He keep telling people of that no one can park outside his shop apart from his customer. He said he has got a rights to park obstruct the way and allow only his customer parking. We can not get out of the premise cause it's only way to get out. He said he pay for the kerbs. And he didn't use his private parking much. He always park on the public park while his parking space is free. Which left not many space for other customer parking. What is my rights

Our Response:
You should check this with your local council, they should be able to tell you if it's a public or private parking space.
ProblemNeighbours - 26-Sep-16 @ 10:19 AM
Hi i run the restaurant business in a small parade. My Italian neighbour has got his dropped kerbs infront of his shop. He keep telling people of that no one can park outside his shop apart from his customer. He said he has got a rights to park obstruct the way and allow only his customer parking. We can not get out of the premise cause it's only way to get out. He said he pay for the kerbs. And he didn't use his private parking much. He always park on the public park while his parking space is free. Which left not many space for other customer parking. What is my rights
Sue - 24-Sep-16 @ 8:54 AM
Sam- Your Question:
Some one parked his car very close to my car. He lives on next road and being lazy to park his car on back side where he supposed to park. He blocked my way to get access to my car I can't even pass through and open my car bonnet and take the pushchair out of my car. I left note for leave enough space between car but he ignored. Can someone advice please what legally action need to take to get rid of this problem.

Our Response:
Unfortunately as long as you can get your vehicle out of its parking space, there is no obstruction being caused.
ProblemNeighbours - 21-Sep-16 @ 2:12 PM
Some one parked his car very close to my car. He lives on next road and being lazy to park his car on back side where he supposed to park. He blocked my way to get access to my car I can't even pass through and open my car bonnet and take the pushchair out of my car. I left note for leave enough space between car but he ignored. Can someone advice please whatlegally action need to take to get rid of this problem.
Sam - 20-Sep-16 @ 5:20 AM
When you apply to the council to drop the kerb to form a driveway into your property you receive permission to cross a public footpath you do not own the public road where the kerb has been dropped it is still part of the highway. You can park over the driveway as long as you do not obstruct them from leaving the drive. Same as you do not have the exclusive use of the right to park outside your home
Bill - 16-Sep-16 @ 9:22 PM
When you apply to the local authority for a dropped kerb to form a driveway you get permission to drive over a public footpath you do not own the public road where the kerb has been dropped it is still part of the highway.
Bill - 16-Sep-16 @ 9:14 PM
Jess - Your Question:
Hi, I live in the bottom end of cul de sac where there are 2 houses and space to turn around. One of the houses has opened up the bottom end of his garden onto the cul de sac and now parks three cars in the area which you are supposed to turn around. I have parked there a couple of times and now he has put up a sign about not parking in front of his access. Where do I stand in terms of parking there and does he have a right to use the access when he doesn't live in the road, he has altered his own land. Thank you.

Our Response:
Is this a public road? If so can you contact the council and ask them about if they can do anything about the restrictions to the turning area? Generally if there is a turning area at the end of a cul de sac, it's accepted that no one parks there.
ProblemNeighbours - 13-Sep-16 @ 11:19 AM
Hi, I live in the bottom end of cul de sac where there are 2 houses and space to turn around. One of the houses has opened up the bottom end of his garden onto the cul de sac and now parks three cars in the area which you are supposed to turn around. I have parked there a couple of times and now he has put up a sign about not parking in front of his access. Where do I stand in terms of parking there and does he have a right to use the access when he doesn't live in the road, he has altered his own land. Thank you.
Jess - 11-Sep-16 @ 11:51 AM
We have a neighbor who has three cars acroo the street with car covers that never ever move.A big eye sore
Itslynnagain - 23-Aug-16 @ 5:49 PM
My neighbour and I share the same drive even though there is a dividing line between the two properties. Since these neighbours have moved in,we have had parking issues regarding the way they park their vehicles. They park right on the dividing line so enabling us to some days to not been able to squeeze between their cars and my garden wall, and if we can park finding it impossible to exit our cars without the passenger doors not fully opening. Whilst their cars leaving plenty of room for their passengers to open their doors completely. We have tried to hold a civilized conversation regarding this issue with them, without resolving the problem. I have been tempted to park my car in line with their drivers doors enabling them to enter their cars... Ok as a pay back. But know this will only lead to more heated debates and arguments.
Gazza - 19-Aug-16 @ 9:23 PM
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