What Milton, GA, Residents Should Know about a Tree on Property Line

Tree disputes between neighbors are rarely predictable and straightforward. While tree-related law may not be particularly complex, slight changes in circumstances can influence what seems fair and reasonable when dealing with trees near property lines.  

Before doing anything to a tree on a property line, consider consulting a lawyer or an arborist. As the go-to expert tree service contractor in Milton, GA, Georgia Tree Company explores neighbor tree management and highlights the legal aspects of shared trees.   

Keep reading to get an overview of the most common rules affecting boundary tree care and property line tree maintenance.  

Responsibility for a Tree on a Property Line  

When a tree sits on a property line (with any part of its trunk spanning both sides), both neighbors share its value and bear responsibility for maintaining it on their respective sides.  

Tree Trimming and Pruning  

Laws regarding tree trimming and other gardening practices vary between jurisdictions, so consult with local authorities before breaking out your saw.  

Generally, neither party may trespass on the other’s property to trim or prune a tree. You can only trim and prune a tree legally to the property line.  

Tree Removal  

Neither you nor your neighbor can remove, damage, or destroy a tree on a property line without the other’s consent.  

Invasive Roots and Overhanging Branches  

What happens if overhanging branches or invasive roots of your neighbor’s tree damage your property? In such a case, you may or may not break the law by trimming those branches or roots.   

For instance, if you trim branches to an extent that compromises the tree’s structural integrity, you could be held legally responsible for any resulting damage. This might include paying up to three times the value of the tree.  

What If a Tree Falls?  

Legal responsibility for falling branches and trees typically depends on whether or not the tree owner has met the common standard of care regarding the tree. Moreover, the law considers some tree-related issues, like fallen leaves, as natural occurrences, thus relieving the tree owner of responsibility.  

The Bottom Line  

The concepts of tree ownership, damage, and trespass remain essentially the same. However, the specific facts of the case and local laws (such as tree ordinances) control the outcome of a dispute about a tree on a property line.  

If you and your neighbor can find a way to handle tree conflicts out of court, you could save plenty of time and resources.  

Trust Your Local Tree Care Experts  

Now that you know how to handle a tree on a property line, rely on our certified arborists at Georgia Tree Company to keep the trees on your property line and across your landscape healthy and robust. We specialize in various tree care solutions, including:  

  • Tree trimming and pruning  
  • Tree removal and stump grinding  
  • Emergency tree services  
  • Tree cutting and chipping  

Are you looking to add some privacy to your yard? Check out the following tips on planting trees for privacy.   

Call Georgia Tree Company at (404) 990-0010 to request a free estimate for tree services in Milton, Georgia, or nearby.

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