Neighbor's Tree

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Latest post Thu, Jun 4 2015 9:08 AM by ca19lawyer2. 7 replies.
  • Tue, Sep 25 2007 3:01 PM

    • Madmike1
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    • Posts 3

    Neighbor's Tree

    I read the posting somewhat simular to my situation
    but mine goes a bit further. My neighbors tree is growing over my pool( my pool was there first). It is constantly dropping leaves into my pool costing me extra time and extra chemicals to keep the pool up. The roots are also cracking my block wall again I had already taken it down once and had it rebuilt. They said they would split the cost but never did. This is another issue. I am familar with the tree and the property line laws. I can't even go on vacation without the leaves clogging my filter and the pool turning green by the time I get back. Since the state of Arizona regulates swimming pools as far as them turning green and breeding mosquitoes. My question is this: Can I use any enviormental pollution and or health hazard laws to get the tree removed as an nuisance. I have also asked them many times to trim the tree and they have not done it. Thank You for any help you may have.
  • Tue, Sep 25 2007 4:03 PM In reply to

    re: Neighbor's Tree

    General rule of thumb in property law is that anything protruding from a neighbor's property into or over your property belongs to you. Any limbs which hang over your yard can be trimmed by you back to the property line as long as you can do this without killing the tree. The same would go for roots on your property, but again, you have to be careful about not cutting so much that the tree dies.

    Perhaps a good compromise would be to trim the branches back so that leaves do not fall into the pool and not do anything with the roots for now?

    Another idea would be to get a quote for cutting the tree down and offer to split the cost with the neighbors?
  • Tue, Sep 25 2007 4:32 PM In reply to

    • Madmike1
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    • Joined on Tue, Sep 25 2007
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    re: Neighbor's Tree

    Janet, Thank You for the input. Iam aware of the tree and property laws as I said. I am trying to find out if I can go other ways. Possible avenues might be polluting of a domestic water supply based on the legal definition on this web site. The owners do have a responsibility to make sure they are not causing a nuisance.
  • Wed, Sep 26 2007 12:07 PM In reply to

    re: Neighbor's Tree

    The only way you could argue pollution of a domestic water supply is if you are using the water in your pool for drinking, cooking, bathing, etc. in your home on a daily basis.

    Leaves falling into a pool are not going to be considered "pollution" and worthy of the interest of an environmental agency. Pollution would be limited to release of specific chemicals that are considered hazardous to human health, i.e. if your neighbor was dumping used oil and paint in their backyard and it was seeping into the groundwater or nearby river or stream.

    You can sue your neighbor in small claims court for the extra expense of pool cleaning, filters, pumps, etc. and the cost of rebuilding the wall. However, legal actions are typically best reserved for a last resort. If you have a problem and you have a legal venue to try to remedy that problem on your own, the courts expect you to at least attempt to "mitigate" the problem on your own prior to taking it to court.

    Expect a judge to ask you in court, "Did you talk to your neighbor, advise them of the situation and ask them to fix it?" "How many times did you contact them about the problem?" "What did they say?" Then, expect to be asked, "Did you attempt to remedy the problem of the limbs hanging over your fence?" "No? Why not?" You will also need to bring copies of any letters you have sent to your neighbor, copies of bills for pool problems related to the leaves, etc.

    Bottom line is that judges and courts expect you to avail yourself of all your possible remedies to the situation BEFORE you take it to court. I'd suggest cutting the limbs that are hanging over your property and then sending your neighbor a polite letter explaining that you would like the tree removed because of the damage it is causing to your property and the expense you have already incurred due to the rebuilding of the wall. If they don't respond or don't do anything, then take them to small claims court and request that they pay half of all of your expenses related to the tree.
  • Thu, Sep 27 2007 4:36 PM In reply to

    • Madmike1
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    • Joined on Tue, Sep 25 2007
    • Posts 3

    re: Neighbor's Tree

    Janet,

    Thank you for your input. Your advise is well taken especially since I have done all of it except trimming the tree. I have kept copies of all my receipts and letters. I gave them a cordial letter a couple of days ago asking them to do the neighborly thing but also said I was at the point of legal action if they did not.

    Thanks Again
  • Thu, Oct 4 2007 4:54 PM In reply to

    • tim718
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    • Joined on Mon, Oct 1 2007
    • Posts 53

    re: Neighbor's Tree

    I'm at a loss for understanding why you would consider take legal action already, as it appears you have not tried to eliminate the growth of the tree that is in your property and thus your responsibility.

    Why? Because look at most any block and you will usually see at least one tree here and there that is on one property but overhangs the other. I have no deciduous trees at all on my lot but have to clean up bags and bags of leaves that fall off of my neighbors huge maple and oak trees every fall. Yet I find it ridiculous if I were to go to the neighbor with receipts for the plastics bags cost over 10, 20 years time and counting, LOL.

    Likewise if you have located a special ammenity (ie) under the growth have you options within reach, again its your responsibility, you could cover your pool, maybe something permanent, or trim the part of the tree, yeah, at your own cost if the neighbors don't agree to split the bill, just like people don't go billing their neighbors for cleanup of their neighbor's tree dropping leaves in their yard however tree-less it may be.

    You generally do have the right the clean-cut any and all parts over hanging well over the property line. A tree doctor could do even sever cuts the proper way to help killing the tree.

    I wonder if you cut your side with a professional and if it still dies, I don't see how you would be automatically liable for it dying if you did it with a professional's help, trees die for various reasons.
  • Thu, Jun 4 2015 1:42 AM In reply to

    Re: Neighbor's Tree

    I have a similar situation and read this post a while back. No I did not have luck with my neighbor and their tree. For 3 years I dealt with a green or highly overchlorinated pool on and off. Finally I found that my pool needed something called a PoolRX which is metal based algecide. That solved the problem.

    The leaves are still in the pool and must be scooped out, and the strainers cleaned but the pool isn't turning green anymore. 

    I hope you were able to do more with your neighbor's tree, I was in your shoes. Good luck. Since this is an old post, most likely you've moved on but I'm hoping someone else will benefit since there is almost no information on this topic.. 

  • Thu, Jun 4 2015 9:08 AM In reply to

    Why are you resurrecting a long-dormant thread?

    Ummm...you realize this thread is from nearly eight years ago, right?

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