I was listening to a talk show on the radio tonight and one of the topics being discussed was neighbour disputes. The presenter of the show, who it would appear from their profile on the radio station website is well qualified (just not in the Law) and was dishing out very dodgy advice of a legal nature.

The presenter was talking about the Human Rights Act in relation to disputes between two private citizens. This is entirely wrong! Your neighbour owes you absolutely nothing in relation to the Human Rights Act. Only public authorities are bound to act in a way that is compatible with convention rights under the Human Rights Act.

Furthermore the presenter was referring to statutory provisions that extend to England and Wales only (this show is broadcast from Scotland to Scotland). Some of what was said existed in a slightly different form north of the border from what it does south of the border, but some of it is just incorrect and the similarities are so vague that the English Law is of no use to a person engaged in a dispute within the jurisdictional boundaries of Scotland.

To top it all off, instead of directing people who were having difficulties with neighbours to Citizens Advice (their local CAB office would have the correct information relating to Scotland including any local byelaws in operation) they were being directed to a complicated website trying to handle both the English and Scottish Law (with far more on the former than the latter).

I couldn’t believe that a supposedly respectable radio station was providing information, without any disclaimer, that was incorrect.

The radio station and presenter will remain nameless.