Neighbor's tree is leaning over my property
When a tree comes down by Act of God, everyone is responsible for their own repairs and clean up. However, if the tree is diseased, dead or damaged and IF you put your neighbor on notice of such my certified mail, then you can sue your neighbor for damages if the tree comes down your property.
Attorney Tom Olsen: Tim, you're on News 96.5. Go ahead.
Tim: How are you doing, young man?
Attorney Tom Olsen Very good, thank you.
Tim: Question is, I'm a landlord and I have a piece of property and the neighbor's giant, white pine tree is leaning, now, more towards my property after the Hurricane Irma.
Attorney Tom Olsen: All right.
Tim: Go ahead.
Attorney Tom Olsen: Go ahead.
Tim: Any ideas on that? How would I handle that?
Attorney Tom Olsen: Here's the dealio, Tim. When a tree comes down by act of God, nobody had any idea, no clue that that tree may come down, it doesn't matter whose tree it is, you're repairing your own damages to your own property. Even if it's on your neighbor's property and it falls on your house, comes down by act of God, you're going to have to do the repairs to your house. Once you know that a tree is damaged or diseased or dead branches are dead and you put your neighbor on notice about that bad tree on their property, and it comes down and does damage to your property, then, you can sue your neighbor.
Tim, if you got a tree that is now leaning more because of a hurricane, I think that that's defective and it's certainly worthwhile putting your neighbors on notice by certified mail, telling them of this problem, telling them that if it comes down and damages your property, you're going to sue them.
Tim: Excellent. That's exactly what I wanted to do now.
Attorney Tom Olsen: Now, Tim, another course of action may be that if you really want to work it out with them and say, "Look, this is a problem. You know it's a problem. I'll help you pay to bring this tree down." You're not legally obligated to do so, but it might be the neighborly thing to do.