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Legal Ease
Legal Ease, Lawyer
Category: Canada Law
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Experience:  Lawyer
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Your branch encroachment post is the answer I'm looking for,

Customer Question

Your branch encroachment post is the answer I'm looking for, I have neighbouring trees whose branches are hitting my house and I want to prune them back to the property line, without going over. BUT, what if the neighbour is a municipality or city?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Canada Law
Expert:  Legal Ease replied 1 year ago.
The city has an obligation to maintain their trees, so contact the city and ask them to come and prune the trees so that they are not overhanging your property any longer.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That isn't going to happen. Not in the budget. I'm assuming common law would apply here, and supersede their tree cutting bylaw (which includes permits, and more expensively BONDS to the City), as their tree, not unlike a private neighbour tree, is encroaching/trespassing on my property with branches hitting my house, so I should be okay to have an Arborist prune back the tree to my property line, without going past it, but I'm not a lawyer :)
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
In Anderson v Skender 1993 BCJ 1769, the British Columbia Court of Appeal wrote:
"...border trees ... do not trespass. It is those who cut them who may in so doing trespass on the land, or air space, of their neighbours. Insofar as branches ... extend across the boundary line into a neighbour’s property, that neighbour may ... have a remedy in nuisance, and this may …include a right to self-help, but it will not generally include a right to enter the other’s property nor to cut any part of the tree which is on the other’s side of the property line."But in my circumstance, the neighbour is the city.
Expert:  Legal Ease replied 1 year ago.
You have the right to trim the trees because they are overhanging. There is not really any doubt about that. But regardless of the budget of the city they also an obligation to ensure they are not causing a nuisance but if you don't mind paying for it that is fine of course.

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