If my neighbor’s tree is damaging my fence, what should I do?

UPDATED: Feb 11, 2012

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If my neighbor’s tree is damaging my fence, what should I do?

The tree has a single branch that pushes up against my tree. Can I legally tell him to cut the branch that is damaging the fence?

Asked on February 11, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

You cannot legally force him to cut the branch except by going to court and seeking a court order (injunction) requiring him to do this. And if the branch is on his side of the fence, you cannot cut it yourself.

If you fence is damaged, he will liable for the repairs if he is on notice of the condition, since it is his property causing the damage. You should have a conversation with him in which you ask him to cut the branch and also make it clear to him that the branch is damaging your fence, to lay the groundwork for a later lawsuit, if necessary, to recover the cost of repairs.

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.

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