What are my legal responsibilities if the roots of my treeare growing under my neighbor’s property?

UPDATED: Aug 31, 2011

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Aug 31, 2011Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What are my legal responsibilities if the roots of my treeare growing under my neighbor’s property?

My neighbor is trying to sell her house and today came to my door to inform me that the roots from one of my trees have been growing under her carport and garage causing some buckling. Her real estate agent wants me to take down the tree and have the roots dug out. She’s has had an offer on the house, but the buyer is concerned about future problems caused by my tree. While I feel for her and would like to help I’m wondering what my legal responsibilities are in this instance?

Asked on August 31, 2011 Oregon


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If the roots of the tree on your side of the property line have caused some issues with "buckling" on your neighbor's property you have no obligation to correct the resulting problems if you did not plant the tree allegedely causing the problem under the laws of all the states in this country.

The tree roots (assuming they are actually causing any problem) are the result of a tree that started years ago either through a planting by a prior owner or through nature. You as the current property owner have no duty to remediate absent some order from the court that your tree is some sort of a nuisance.

Your neighbor or any new owner can cut the roots of your tree on their side of the property so long as the cutting does not damage your tree. If they damage your tree by the cutting of its roots, they are responsible to your for any resulting damages.

Good question.

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