Who’s Responsible For An Overhanging Tree? You Or Your Neighbor?
Does anyone else have an issue with a neighbor's tree taking over your property? How about one that's grown through the powerlines? Do you know the rules on removal?
Angel here and this past summer we added a deck to our backyard. We had always noticed our neighbor's tree-dropping leavings but now that we have a pretty new deck it is even more obvious. Now here's the deal we aren't the type of neighbors that complain about everything but this tree is ruining our deck, our yard, and all of our outside furniture.
I asked Joe earlier in the summer if we could just trim the limbs back a bit to the fence to solve some of the issues. He said we could until he realized the limbs were growing through the powerlines. This is a whole separate problem.
I decided to do a little research to find out if there were any laws against cutting/trimming your neighbor's tree and also how you handle tree limbs in the lines and here's what I found;
I had the pleasure of talking with Renee at City Action and she explained to me that I could file a complaint at Property Maintenance. The city will come out and look at the tree and let you know what and/or if they can alleviate the problem or if it is your responsibility. All you have to do is call City Action at 270-687-4444.
I also had the opportunity to speak with Rick Whitmer with Owensboro Municipal Utilities (super nice guy by the way) and he explained to me just as you own your property you own the air above it. Meaning if the tree from your neighbor's yard is growing over into your yard you have the legal right to trim the tree for maintenance. However, if you're unsure of the danger of trimming due to powerlines or communication lines you can call OMU to leave your address, phone number, and concerns and they will send someone out to investigate. If it is an AT&T or Spectrum issue those companies generally do not trim limbs because the tree does not affect their services.
Your best option is to talk with your neighbor and let them know you will be trimming the tree. If you run into other issues take the steps above to manage the issue appropriately without damaging your property or the powerlines or harming yourself.