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Neighbor Disputes: The Tree Conundrum

They say the apple doesn't fall too far from the tree.

Okay. But whose tree did it fall from?

Boston real estate lawyers would tell you that the "tree" rules aren't too different in Massachusetts. The answer to the question lies in simple biology.

Well, I guess its biology. Or maybe botany.

The tree owner is the person on whose property the trunk of the tree lies.

Now that we've resolved that, let's ask another question: What happens when your tree is damaged by a neighbor?

Let's pretend for a second that your neighbor chopped down your tree. What should you consider doing?

Now, while this may be an area of law that wanders into the realm of the Boston personal injury attorney at times, I don't doubt that Boston real estate lawyers often deal with neighborly disputes, as well. And specifically, when it comes to the ownership of an item that may be fixed onto the property, then real estate questions arise, before adjudicating on the merits of any injury discussion.

Here are a few points to ponder:

Make sure the tree is entirely on your lot. You should probably talk to a Boston real estate attorney to help you determine the description of your parcel of land and to make sure that the tree is entirely on your lot of land. A tree trunk that stands on the land of multiple owners is owned by all of them.

Take a look at what the neighbor did to the tree. Did the neighbor cut down and damage the whole tree, or did the neighbor simply trim a few branches? You might not have any right to action if the neighbor only trimmed a few branches that were hanging over his or her property line.

Did the neighbor cause deliberate damage to your tree? This is a very important question because it could lead to greater damages.

If you have any questions, have a look at some of our related resources. Of course, feel free to browse our directory and find a Boston real estate lawyer to answer your questions.

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