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legalgems, Arbitrator
Category: Real Estate Law
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Experience:  Just Answer consultant at Self employed
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My neighbor in Cary2 trees that have encroached on my yards

Customer Question

My neighbor in Cary2 trees that have encroached on my yards fence uprooting the fence and above ground roots extending 3 feet in my backyard another tree trunk has grown into the fence breaking it. I have talked with both the neighbor and his wife about removing the trees causing the damage at least on 4 occasions. The wife insists that they don't have a budget to remove the trees and have another tree that is a higher priority because it is leaning toward another neighbor's property. On 2 occasions she told me that I could remove the trees but I had to pay for the removal. During this time this neighbor has had a tree service remove several trees from their property. When I talked with the husband he insisted that he loves trees and will never remove them. I brought him over to my back yard and showed him the damage and he acknowledged his trees caused the damage and are continuing to increase the damage and still insists that he will not remove the trees. He insists that I should move my fence away from the trees. I had the fence built 30 years ago and at that time the trees were not a problem. I was built in accordance to NC laws and Cary laws for a boundary fence.
After trying to resolve the problem by talking with the neighbor didn't get any result,I sent the neighbor a certified letter explaining the problem and my efforts to resolve it with him and his wife and told him it is his responsibility to maintain his trees so that they don't encroach onto my property. I have not received a response from him.
As I understand my options, I can't have the offending trees removed from his property to stop the damage to my property. Moving the fence back 3 feet into my property will not fix the problem as the above ground root will just continue to encroach further into my property.
Can you tell me what options I have? I would appreciate any suggestions you might have.
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

I am sorry to hear this;

A few minutes please as I look into this.

Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

So under Code 1-539.1, cutting/trimming a tree belonging to another exposes that person to double damages (2x the value of the tree) - I believe you are aware of that but wanted to give you the statute.

If one's property is damaged by another's property, the landowner causing the damage is liable for the cost of repairs. However, in order to prevent further damage, the innocent homeowner can bring an injunction request based on nuisance-basically requesting the court to order the tree owner to remove the tree by X date. If they refuse, the court can issue sanctions which can include fines (usually per day), the award of attorney fees, even jail time if the contempt is knowing and willful/intentional.

Any communication should be documented as the judge will typically look to see if the homeowner sought an out of court resolution before issuing an injunction.

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Expert:  legalgems replied 2 months ago.

Hi- just checking in to see if you needed clarification on any of the above information. If so please post here (there is no additional charge for this) and I will do my best to get you the requested information.

Thank you!

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