3 Cases in Which Your Neighbor Can Sue You for Tree-Related Issues

Trees can be a source of joy in an area, or they can cause considerable friction between neighbors. It all depends on how you care for your trees and remove those that have to be removed. Here are three scenarios in which your neighbor may sue you for tree-related damage:

Your Tree Falls on the Neighbor's Property

Whether your neighbor can hold you responsible for the damage caused by the fallen tree depends on the cause of the fall. In most cases, you will be responsible for the damage if you could have foreseen and prevented it. However, you don't have to pay for the damage if it's caused by an act of God.

For example, if you decide to cut a tree on your own without involving a professional, it can fall on your neighbor's compound and damage their car or house. In this case, you may be required to pay for the damage since you should have realized that cutting the tree could damage your neighbor's property. You can also be held liable for the damage caused by a rotten tree that falls on your neighbor's property, especially if you had been warned about it and took no action.

Your Tree's Roots Damage the Neighbor's Property

A tree doesn't have to fall to cause damage; roots can grow long distances and cause damage to infrastructures such as foundation and underground pipes.In such a case, state laws determine which actions your neighbor can take. For example, in some cases, your neighbor can trim the roots and charge you for the damage they have caused.

Your Tree Blocks Your Neighbor's View

Lastly, your large trees can cause problems with your neighbor when they block the neighbor's view. Most state laws don't allow people to remove trees blocking their views if the trees are growing on other people's property. However, many local jurisdictions have ordinances, zoning laws, or subdivision rules that make it illegal to block a neighbor's view with a tree (or anything else). If that's the case in your area, then your neighbor can sue you when your large tree blocks, say, their view of the ocean.

As you can see, your trees can cause serious friction between you and your neighbor. It can also lead to expensive lawsuits and monetary fines. You can avoid all these by monitoring your trees, maintaining them, and listening to your neighbors' complaints. Hiring tree services can reduce the risk of damage.