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Ray
Ray, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 39510
Experience:  30 years in civil, probate, real estate, elder law
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Tree over leaning my house...am i responsible for trimming?

Customer Question

tree over leaning my house...am i responsible for trimming?
JA: Because real estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: orlando florida
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: no
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I asked him to share trimming but no go
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ray replied 3 months ago.

Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you today.Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question and respond.

Expert:  Ray replied 3 months ago.

Florida law allows you to trim to the property line.The neighbor here is not liable for that cost so unless they voluntarily assume that then you shoudl trim the tree to the property line and off your house.

Reference

By law, you have the right to trim branches and limbs that extend past the property line. However, the law only allows tree trimming and tree cutting up to the property line. You may not go onto the neighbor's property or destroy the tree.

Conflicts Involving Trees and Neighbors - Real Estate Law - FindLaw

So go on and trim the tree to avoid damage to the property or fence line as allowed here under Florida law.

I appreciate the chance to help you today.Thanks again.

If you can positive rate 5 stars when we are done it is always much appreciated.

Expert:  Ray replied 3 months ago.

More

What is the liability for over-hanging branches and encroaching roots?

Branches and roots frequently extend across property lines. Whether a branch or root from a tree on an adjacent landowner's property is the responsibilty of the landowner with the tree located on his or her property or the landowner of the property to which the branches overhang or roots encroach depends upon the branches or roots themselves. If the branches or roots are healthy, then the landowner with the tree located on his or her property is not liable for damage caused by the branches or roots. The adjoining landowner may, at his or her own expense, trim back the branches or roots as he or she desires up to the property line. If the branches are dead, however, then the landowner with the tree located on his or her property is responsible and could be liable for damages caused by the branches (1 Fla. Jur 2d Adjoining Landowners section 8 [2014]).

In Scott v. McCarty, a property owner brought action against a neighbor alleging that overhanging branches and roots from the neighbor's tree caused damage to his property (41 So.3d 989, 989 [Fla. 4th DCA 2010]). The Court affirmed the trial court's dismissal with prejudice of appellant's complaint for damages based upon Gallo v. Heller, 512 So. 2d 215, 216 (Fla. 3d DCA 1987), which explained the common law rule:

[A] possessor of land is not liable to persons outside the land for a nuisance resulting from trees and natural vegetation growing on the land. The adjoining property owner to such a nuisance, however, is privileged to trim back, at the adjoining owner's own expense, any encroaching tree roots or branches and other vegetation which has grown onto his property.

Scott, 41 So. 3d at 989 (quoting Gallo, 512 So. 2d at 216) (alterations in original).

You can trim here to the property line, you have to bear the costs. I know this is frustrating for you but this is the law here in Florida.Please don't shoot the messenger.