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legaleagle, Lawyer (JD)
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Attorney-Business degree from The University of Texas
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My property zoning law (Stamford, CT) requires

Resolved Question:

My property zoning law (Stamford, CT) requires structures to be at least 5 feet from the property line. I know that this does not apply to fences (I think). However, a neighbor has built a stone retaining wall along the property line. Dirt was pushed up to the wall on their side so you can not notice the wall. Wall and dirt are the same height - but on my side, there is now a wall. Since this is not a fence - should this structure be at least 5 feet from the property line?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Legal
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Relist: No answer yet.
Expert:  legaleagle replied 8 years ago.

The zoning code does not define what a structure is. You could argue that the wall is a structure and not a fence and it would be up to the zoning board to determine if they are in violation. The neighbor could argue that the wall is not a structure. Below is the only reference to a defition for structure and it tends to be in your favor that the wall is a structure and must be 5 feet from the property line. Also if the wall is a retaining wall, your interpretation is more reasonable because it is not being used as a fence, it is being used as a structure to hold back the dirt.

Sec. 146-1. Definitions. A. Whenever the words "dwelling," "dwelling unit," "rooming house," "rooming unit," "hotel," "hotel unit," "premises" and "structure" are used in this chapter, they shall be construed as if they were followed by the words "or any part thereof."

B. Except as otherwise provided, the following definitions shall apply in the interpretation and enforcement of this chapter:

Accessory structure. A detached structure which is not used or intended to be used for living or sleeping by human occupants and which is located on the same premises with a dwelling.

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