sorry about all those leaves my tree has left in your yard, but the law made me do it. The usual rule is that the entire tree belongs to whoever owns the property where the trunk is located and that includes those pears. There are some things to consider if you have a problem with a tree on a shared property line: If the neighbor took reasonable care of the tree and a … Imagine a pear tree next to your property line. Later cases specified that adjoining property owners own such trees as “tenants in common.” That’s a type of shared ownership, along with joint tenancy, and tenancy by the entirety. The client’s neighbor cut down two large trees near the property line without the permission of the client. Neighbors may have affirmative obligations to maintain a common wall or preserve a pathway that gives access to another’s property. You own the airspace over your ground—up to an uncertain limit—so trimming overhanging branches is certainly OK. That’s true even if the trunk is completely in your neighbor’s yard. Some treat disputes between neighbors as a special category of legal problems. Under Connecticut case law, if a tree is growing on one person ' s land but its branches or roots encroach on a neighbor ' s land, the neighbor can cut off the branches or roots up to the line of his or her land (see McCrann v. Town Planning & Zoning Commission, 161 Conn. 65 (1971)). In Illinois, if someone damages your tree, you can recover your actual damages (usually, what you paid for the tree or what it would cost to replace the tree). The following question was submitted to John Roska, an attorney/writer whose weekly newspaper column, "The Law Q&A," ran in the Champaign News Gazette. Not so fast. In a surprising number of cases, people have sued for a court order to force neighbors to cut overhanging tree limbs. Worried about doing this on your own? You can, however, trim branches that hang over your yard. And while you’re at it, can you cut all the roots that are in my lawn?” If I had a dime for every time someone asked me that question, I’d be the better looking version of Bill Gates. Tree disputes can take many forms, such as trees that fall on a neighbor's property and cause damage or circumstances where a neighbor's tree blocks what would be a scenic or otherwise pleasant view. (Your neighbor isn’t legally responsible for reimbursing your deductible; you could sue to recover that amount, but it’s not a sure bet.) After the client and the neighbor were unable to work out the dispute, the client represented herself by filing suit in Magistrate Court. In Scotland, an action that may be justified against a stranger might not be justified against a neighbor. To find out whether Illinois … I have several 10-year old trees close to my lot line, bordering a neighbor's lot & fence. Damage Caused by Your Trees: You have a duty to take reasonable steps to prevent your tree from harming your neighbors. In one case, digging a foundation for a home didn’t make someone liable when that killed their neighbor’s tree. In some states, specific laws allow you to recover additional damages if someone deliberately damages your tree. Although neighborhood lawn disputes may only rarely break into a physical altercation, they do turn into litigation with somewhat more frequency. Your feedback is the best way for us to improve our services. The owner of a fallen tree is responsible for the cleanup and any damages caused by the tree. Part of the trunk is on my property, and part is on my neighbor’s. If you trim the branches or cut the roots and the tree may die as a result, this could be a problem. That imposes a duty on you to take reasonable steps to prevent your tree from falling on their roof. “My neighbor’s tree has branches crossing over my fence. Who owns the tree on both my and my neighbor's property? “A person commits trespass by causing or permitting a thing to cross the boundary of the premises,” citing City of Ar-lington v. City of Fort Worth, 873 S.W. May 31, 2019 / in Law Review / Tags: Neighbor Encroaching on Property, Prescriptive Easement, Without Permission by Crysta Dwyer A common occurrence in our area, given the frequent lack of survey monuments, is a neighbor’s inadvertent building over your property line, whether it be a driveway, a fence, a deck or even a portion of a house. Neither you nor your arborist may go onto a neighbor’s property or destroy the tree. As a personal aside to my neighbor . It is accepted law in all states that a tree whose trunk stands wholly on the land of one person belongs to that person. This commentary so far should strike you as just being barely to the good side of batty. The appellate court held it did. If the trunk stands partly on the land of two or more people, it is called a boundary tree, and in most cases it belongs to all the property owners. Don’t be a jerk. But, what if it is not your tree? If your neighbor refuses to do the right thing and address the issue at … A statute imposes liability for cutting a tree on another person ' s land without permission. The persons involved do not matter. If the tree is on the property line, both property owners share the value of the tree and are responsible for upkeep on their side of the boundary line. You both own it. In short, they are a danger to persons on your property. But, these international examples do remind us that it is cooperation and not fences that make the best neighbors. . 63 (Ind.Ct.App.