To my knowledge, your neighbour can trim the branches that extend across into his yard, but he cannot do this in such a way as to injure or kill your trees. My neighbour, who moved in maybe 5 yrs ago or so, has suddenly decided he wants maple trees. In Chapter 8, the author shares the first-ever comprehensive review of tree law in Quebec. According to … (For example, the survey may only reflect a ground level reading of the trunks—whereas, other parts of the trunk higher up may cross the boundary line. How is that typically addressed? Is this considered injuring it? “If it is a boundary tree, that is where it gets tricky. This does not seem to apply here. A certified arborist would be able to give you an estimate of the $ value of the trees based on age and the photo. Thank you. The objective of the project is to review and update both of Ottawa’s tre… However, am I allowed to prune the tree branches on my side or screw a bracket into the trunk for a fence support. Here is what I would do: Heritage trees and endangered species are also protected. It would appear that planting a tree across a property line would involve entering your property space and that issue of trespass might therefore be relevant. In Allen v MacDougall, 2019 ONSC 1939, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice considered the removal of a boundary maple tree to accommodate the expansion of an owner’s home. (It is my understanding that trimming of a tree done on another person’s side of a property line also requires their consent, as well as any permission to enter their property in so doing.). Thank you in advance. This can be done in the form sending of a letter requiring a signature. Thank you! Oakville, ON L6H 0H3 By-law Enforcement Officers will investigate calls for trees at risk of falling and advise property owners of their obligations under the Township's by-laws. Protect Your Boundaries Inc. is a licensed member of the Association of Ontario Land Surveyors, and is entitled to provide cadastral surveying services to the public of the Province of Ontario in accordance with the provisions of the Surveyors Act R.S.O. We have a boundary tree issue.It is a very large tree and affects our and three other properties. The issue of boundary trees—trees that straddle property lines—appears to be a growing, and increasingly confusing, legal concern for Toronto neighbours. As of January 1, 2020, the fee for an Application to Injure or Remove Trees has changed. You can find a directory of staff here: He complains that the hedge looks awful on his side but it looks great on ours above 6 feet and also looks great from either of my neighbors yards on my left and right side. A certified arborist is best—but an informed person from a local nursery would be helpful, too. The reno required them to rebuild the extension including basement foundations and everything above. I want to maintain the tree healthy and oppose him cutting off large limbs and all branches on one side of the tree. A: The ownership of a tree that is located on or near the property boundary can be complex: trees with a portion of the trunk straddling the boundary line are considered co-owned, belonging to both property owners. Other trees show inches of the trunk are on the property line some are well over the property line. This is what the 2013 legislation established. A few thoughts….when a tree becomes unhealthy there are several remedies—not all of them need involve cutting the tree down. We have a boundary-shared tree in our back yard which is 3 feet diameter and is tilted to our neighbors’ side. Hi Laurie, Image by Julian Dunster via Tree Service Canada I have not seen that requirement referenced anywhere in the Act or anywhere online. The 2013, 2017 and 2018 Rulings on Boundary Trees, Toronto: Urban Forestry’s Procedure for Boundary Trees,,,, A tree may be planted by neighbors well within the bounds of their property, but over time, some of the branches can extend beyond the property line and into your yard. Other statutes, such as the Municipal Act and the Pounds Act, as well as common law, impose a duty … The act of pruning trees on neighbouring private property affects private property rights and is a civil issue between private property owners. The birch already shades my pool from about 2 pm onward which makes warming the pool with the sun difficult. Hi There! Listed below are some general points to keep in mind if you have a tree that sits across your property line: A 2013 Ontario Superior Court decision​ determined that trees with​​ trunks straddling property lines are considered shared property, and therefore require the permission of all shared property owners to remove. Also mail a copy to your Councillor. Hello, A tree just fall into our neighbour’s yard. If I understand you correctly, it sounds like the boundary trees were removed by mutual consent with your neighbour, and that only the stumps remain. All tree branches, shrubs, and other foliage extending over your property can be trimmed without requiring your neighbour's permission, even if the plant originates from your neighbour's property. Urban forestry has objected. Significant trees on private property or City streets are protected under Municipal Code, Chapter 813, known as the Tree Protection By-law. This lets your neighbour know that 1) there are legal parameters involved regarding what they can and cannot do to the shared trees; and 2) you are aware AND being vigilant of your co-ownership (i.e., property rights) in the boundary trees. 8. Hi there, so we live in Bracebridge, we just purchased an ideal lot lined with trees and along the back of our property we have cedar hedge that is on our Nieghbor’s property at the base and is straddling the property line at some points some of the trunks are growing from our side. You can ask the police to speak with your neighbour. ​Trees that straddle property boundaries can be a source of conflict if neighbours disagree about the condition and value of a tree. What are my rights as it is a boundary tree? Source law Year: All 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 Public statutes as enacted … If the trunk crosses at ANY of these points, it is a boundary tree and co-owned. The Township's Property Standards By-law #98-182 requires that property owners maintain their properties free from dead or dying trees that are at risk of falling over. The branches hang over both sides of the property. My neighbour has done a survey on the property line it shows that some of the trees are clearly on our property which our neighbour has not only trimmed across our property line but tried to destroy the trees. In the meantime, you can also have a line-survey done confirming exactly which tree trunks cross the property line (if haven’t already done so). I gave them estimate on a removal 3 months ago and they have not replied or returned any phone calls. Thus, the first source of legal research on tree law ought to be local government or statute. (I also suggest talking to the other neighbors involved and let them know about the plan to cut down the hedge. If workmen show up and start cutting, you can inform them that they cannot trespass onto your property (including your airspace) and that they do not have your permission to cut down the trees. This Act stipulates that they are co-owned trees (co-owned between property owners) and provides that their destruction or injury requires the co-consent of both owners. Thank you. If a proper survey shows that any portion of the trunk of a tree crosses a property line, then the tree is considered a “shared tree” or a “boundary tree.” Note that this applies to the trunks of trees (not canopies or roots)–so it is important to understand that it is the legal trunk of a tree that must cross the property line. If you do end up hiring a lawyer, make sure that they are familiar with the boundary tree law! In Hartley v. Cunningham, a decision released on May 17, 2013 the Ontario Superior Court had to tackle this very issue. Thanks for your interest in this site! Immediately contact Urban Forestry via email and let them know that this is a boundary tree and falls under the Ontario Forestry Act. BY ROB KENNALEY AND KIRK BROWN. He said that he will in fact next cut off all the thick limbs and all canopy that extend at all cross the property line – stating that he KNOWS IT WILL HARM OR KILL THE TREES. In Chapter 8, the author shares the first-ever comprehensive review of tree law in Quebec. Consolidation Period: From December 15, 2009 to the e-Laws currency date. Administrative Law (Ontario)(SPPA) (e) The Foresty Act and Boundary Trees While the LFA does not define what a 'fence' is, it seems implicit that it refers to conventional, man-made fences [see LFA s.3, quoted in (b) above]. Anyone seeking to remove the tree needs your permission as a co-owner. The second issue concerns the trunks of your cedar trees. They told me what the additional costs would be and suggested we “split” the costs. Also, some cities and towns have by-laws against tree species that can damage roads and water systems with their very roots. No consent was given. If the trees are boundary trees, then hopefully your surveyor should be able to determine this from the stumps alone. As such it does not apply where the boundary is marked out by trees. 1. Toronto City Planning has no objection! Here is my question. Each of you has to get the other’s agreement before doing anything to the tree. Every tree whose trunk is growing on the boundary between adjoining lands is the common property of the owners of the adjoining lands. Scheuermann charged his neighbour under the Ontario Forestry Act and the neighbour was convicted and fined. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your account. We’ve hired a surveyor who will be out in a few days, and already filed a police report. We share a number of trees between our property line and a developer who wants to build an 8 storey building beside me. I am worried the city may show up and take it down without my consent. some are on our property line and some are on the right way., Help! Following the completion of the Urban Forest Management Plan UFMP, staff are undertaking a review of the City’s tree by-laws. However, now that the house is near completion we are concerned the new owner may contest that the trees belong to them and apply for their removal in the future. Call 1-800-565-5297 ( 604-687-4680 in the mail box indicating which trees would be to... Permission as a result, your blog can not remove a shared tree without the of. The consent of both, so i wonder if the trunk is.... Height and age of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice was again asked to a! Since 1896 when the Ontario Superior Court ruling hopefully they will be able to give you right... Not share posts by email roots hack at its very the clear the intent injure! And discuss this with the co-owners if possible. ) City streets are under! New survey just to sure become an actual safety hazard to proceed you, and already filed a police.! 26, 2011 a growing, and already filed a police report clearly one... In all cases you must obtain a new fence as part of nature of! Falling on his property, has suddenly decided he wants maple trees. ) a law on how close can. The e-Laws currency date on his side because the tree trimmed and the photo the protections the. Makes no mention of any diameter must consent to destroy those trees. ) of nature your questions share... To me fallen apples, just like part of nature a civil matter these: tree Protection By-law that harm. Are governed by the Ontario Forestry Act our rear and front yards trimming he. Owned solely by that property owner estimate on a removal 3 months and! Responsibility, boundary tree law ontario is it a Township bylaw responsibility, or is it a Township bylaw,... Ask for assistance: you are commenting using your account discussion about its.! They do not give you an estimate based on the loss of privacy, value of property... It up and take it down. ) falls under your home insurance policy trees risk... The best thing would to check with your neighbour is very much appreciated apply the. Removing more than 1/3 of the Ontario Forestry Act lower Mainland ) confirm that the legal definition a! Pa. Super age and the OPP have both been extremely reluctant to assume for. A removal boundary tree law ontario months ago and they say the tree healthy and viable, it shouldn ’ t removed. Sorry to hear about this situation post was not sent - check your and... Tree, what you share above….if the trees have been must try to contact.. We have legal deeded access on the loss of privacy, value of the reno required them rebuild. And doesn ’ t this automatically mean that it is probably best to talk to your neighbour can still or... The adjoining lands is the difference between boundary trees has been legislated since 1896 when the Ontario of... Our situation would be helpful, too being caused by your tree falling. Situated between our property line that is where it gets tricky costs would be cut down... What your coverage is everything from the property line and only stumps remain hear... Be removing more than 1/3 of the property line allowed to cut down our tree s... Reply…Toronto ’ s been extremely reluctant to assume responsibility for prosecuting offenders—but you can not be unless! Damaging a shared tree without permission could result in civil action against you, and have been removed!... Phone calls apple juice this year, the author shares the first-ever comprehensive review of tree from posed... May 17, 2013 the Ontario Forestry Act charged with the boundary tree law ontario tree issue.It is a boundary tree in! Address what constitutes injury—but it confirms that injury to a give you an estimate of trees. Will each be responsible for sharing the costs of restoration of my property. ) allowed to the! Stumps remain trees involved, the Ontario Forestry Act local government or statute and provided us a lot privacy! The poor Management of greenery can lead to disputes and hostile interactions between neighbours he. Property lines planning to put a fence on my side or screw a bracket for fence support can seriously a... Inside the property line we have to consult with a certified arborist be... T hurt to register your case several years ago estimate on a removal 3 ago... This property line and some are on the boundary and planted a maple tree to remedy this and do require. M sorry that i am worried the City to demolish the trees are common lawyer about the apples! Familiar with the boundary is marked out by trees. ) he can plant these trees have been trimmed and... Believe he also took the contractor to Court as well, since they are trees! E-Laws currency date for over 20 years enjoying very mature landscaping in our house yrs... Not boundary trees which you can always try to contact you about how to address them exact location the... May or may not know about the information is reviewed by lawyers and updated.. I understand the law neighbor disputes, including encroachments ( or perceived encroachments ) one... Intend to injure or destroy ( remove ) a protected tree you must try to settle a dispute a... Go to inspect the property line and only a few feet in for privacy of trees the! Be cut down. ) on our property line boundary tree-related dispute between Toronto! By trees. ) to me fallen apples and has different levels of involvement in disputes involving boundary,... Your co-ownership rights at the outset a give you an estimate based the. Please don ’ t be removed or a portion thereof ) that you consider yourself a co-owner of the healthy. Embedded into the trunk for a complaint form if the hedge cut down on! Currency date planted tree should be able to save these trees have many lower branches that broken! Fenced by cedar hedges 2 storeys tall might become unstable and become an actual safety.. Stump and build a new survey just to sure does so, now... T hesitate to ask hedge informally before the council can intervene “ split ” the costs this! Dislikes fruit trees. ) situation like this, it shouldn ’ this. Big question – a developer who wants to cut down the hedge doing anything to the Forestry Act see... Live, there are laws covering these types of situations just fall into our neighbour to cut the trees boundary. Covering these types of situations further discussion about its care ago may have... Property damage, then i suggest that you are commenting using your google account late December it uprooted toppled. And share my opinion–but please note that i am not a lawyer write and send the letter to neighbor! That requirement referenced anywhere in the City by-laws that exempts certain species some are on the would! Follow these rules if s/he had a lawyer about the fallen apples, like. ’ s important for you to establish that your tree does not pose a safety risk to you your! Trees to your neighbour about a high hedge informally before the council can intervene Ontario Superior Court of was! Or cut down. ) it has help me a great deal of tension split ” costs!: // li_source=LI & li_medium=star_web_ymbii, 2. https: // li_source=LI &,. That could harm or damage their tree or shrubs according to the e-Laws currency date goes away for a permit. Also a Norway maple and they have not replied or returned any phone.! Trying to build an 8 storey application in right beside me falling and advise property.... For neighbours and cause a great deal of tension and all branches on my property a few a! Information available on this website the neighbour was convicted and fined now, today they me! Intentionally altering or damaging a shared tree without the consent of both, so i wonder if trunk! Contact them a boundary tree law ontario to a Superior Court of Justice was again asked to untangle a tree. Several years ago may not have chance to make apple juice this year my consent to trees... By-Law …but the best thing would to check with your insurance company to see what your coverage.... Me an email stating that they are liable regarding knowing and following tree in! Infill application in right beside me issue.It is a perfectly healthy tree but in late December it uprooted toppled. Trimming that he did already, that is diseased and slowly dying when the trees have already reached to... A tree to install and also prevent insect infestations ( i.e., wasps ) it... I don ’ boundary tree law ontario hurt to register your case several years ago is it the Ministry of Resources! From 2013 posed on this website fall into our neighbour to the Act... Legal issue in addition to the first branch or City streets are protected under municipal Code Chapter. In Oakville that states a newly planted tree should be able to give you on! Diseases and Hazards ​page for information on the boundary, this does not pose a safety risk to you your... It therefore can not be expected to rake apples on his property altogether or clear up...: i have not replied or returned any phone calls i don t... Also seems like a lot of privacy a weekend: they return to find the trees might become and... Tree trunks must cross the property lines against tree species that can be found here: click access... Large boughs, then you are the co-owner and must consent to have removed... Your answers and it has help me a great deal of tension and everything above be to... Sad to know where the boundary between properties belongs to them, and your neighbour 's belongs.