Private and unadopted sewers.
You may have a private sewer or lateral drain if you live on a site that has a number of properties, for example a block of flats or a caravan site.
If you have a private or unadopted sewer, and own a property, you are responsible for the cost of maintaining and repairing it. If the sewer serves a number of properties, all the owners are jointly responsible for these costs.
Your local authority environmental health department can order you to repair or unblock a private sewer or lateral drain if it’s not properly maintained. If you don’t do the work in the time period specified by the local authority, they may carry out the work themselves and charge you for it.
Asking your sewerage company to take over or adopt a private sewer or lateral drain
You can ask your water or local sewerage company to take over or adopt a private sewer or lateral drain. You can do this if the sewer or drain has been constructed or improved to the standards required by the company and is in reasonable condition. The sewerage company needs to be satisfied that adopting the sewer will benefit the sewerage system as a whole. Everyone responsible for maintaining the lateral drain or sewer must agree to responsibility being transferred to the sewerage company.
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