Do I have legal right to ask neighbor to remove fence they built 100 on my property?

Get Legal Help Today

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Do I have legal right to ask neighbor to remove fence they built 100 on my property?

My neighbor built a wood picket fence and galvanized pole cemented in the ground 100 on my property before I moved in. After they built it they had a survey done and the property lines marked so they are aware it is completely on my property also pretty obvious just by looking at it. Their fence now has termites and I want to replace it with a very nice, and expensive, modern fence finished on both sides and privacy. I have not asked or expect my neighbor to contribute toward my new fence since it will be 100 on my property – although they will benefit as much or more from it as I will our city requires them to have a fully fenced property because they have a pool, but am not required to have any fences on my property, yet I do still want this fence for backyard privacy and to keep pets in/out.

I ‘have’ asked my neighbor to remove their old fence and haul it away at their expense. They’ve refused. Do I have a legal right to demand that they remove and dispose of the fence they built 100 on my property but before I moved into the house? And do I have a right to sue them in small claims court for the cost of removing and disposing of their fence if I am stuck paying for it?

Also, I know they really like the style of the new fence I’ve planned and it matches very well with their home as well as mine since I replaced the fence on the other side of my property and they’ve commented over and over how much they like that new fence.

Thank you

Asked on March 30, 2017 under Real Estate Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can force them to pay for the cost of removing the fence and any re-landscaping necessary due to its removal: they have no right to build a fence (or any structure) on your land, and a property owner can require others to move anything placed without permission on the property owner's land and restore any damage, etc. done. You could remove the fence, then sue for the cost in small claims court; or you could sue in county court (not small claims) for a court order requiring them to arrange and pay for the removal--this second option is more expensive for you in terms of litigation costs and more complex, since county court is more procedurally complicated than small claims.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption