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Resolving Disputes With Neighbours Regarding Trees | HK News

Resolving disputes with neighbours regarding trees and hedges

| Published on August 10, 2020

If your neighbour has a tree or hedge that is close to the boundary of your property which interferes with your reasonable enjoyment of your land or is causing (or imminently will cause) damage to your property, then you may be entitled to claim an injunction or damages for any loss suffered as a result. Before this can happen, it is important to check that the trees are in fact the responsibility of your neighbour.

How can the dispute be settled?

Your neighbour has a responsibility to take reasonable steps to mitigate potential, and foreseeable, damage to your property. If branches overhang onto your land then you have a right to cut those branches back to the boundary line; but you must ensure that you do not damage the tree in doing so. It is best to discuss your plans to trim the trees or hedges with your neighbour to maintain neighbourly relations. The branches belong to your neighbour so you should return these to them.

Check whether a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) may be in place for your neighbour’s tree; you can find out if a tree is protected by a TPO by contacting your local council. Check also for any wildlife that may be nesting too which you must ensure are protected. You may also be entitled to complain to your local council if the hedges are evergreen, higher than 2 metres and have an adverse effect on the enjoyment of your land. However, contacting the council should be a last resort; you are expected to try and agree to a solution with your neighbour before raising a formal complaint.

Humphries Kirk Solicitors can help

Humphries Kirk encourages engaging in friendly discussions with your neighbours in an attempt to resolve disputes amicably. It is important to record what has been discussed and to consider compromising. If you and your neighbour struggle to come to an agreement or if matters escalate further, Humphries Kirk can offer advice and assist you with potential disputes.

For further guidance, please contact a member of our dispute resolution team, Matthew Hills or Michelle Dixon in our Poole office on 01202 725400.

Visit us at www.hklaw.uk and follow us @HumphriesKirk on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.

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