What to do if the roots from out neighbor’s tree is damaging our property?

UPDATED: Jan 12, 2012

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What to do if the roots from out neighbor’s tree is damaging our property?

Our neighbor has a big tree planted too close to our shared fence. This has resulted in damaged caused by the roots to the fence as well our pavement at our yard. We talked about ita  couple years ago and they are paying no attention. Now, they are selling their house. Can you please suggest any action we can do to resolve this issue.

Asked on January 12, 2012 under Real Estate Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

A neighbor is responsible for damage his or her tree does if the neighbor has notice or warning of the damage, or at least the potential for damage. (That's why if you have a dead or sick tree on your property, you can be liable if it then falls on someone's car.) If you have provided notice to the neighbor and he or she has not done anything about it, you could sue the neighbor, seeking a court order requiring the roots to be cut or tree taken down, and also possibly seeking compensation for the damage already done.

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