Neighbor's dead tree is leaning against my oak and threatening to fall on my property

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Thomas wrote:

That's like the guy with two black eyes.
He got the first when he untucked a woman's dress from her pantyhose as he stood behind her in line.
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Strictly, legally speaking, it's completely your problem since you knew it was dead and didn't tell your neighbor of your fears. You now can tell the neighbor you are having a crew enter their property for the purpose of fixing the safety hazard (i.e. cutting the tree so it no longer poses the hazard) and that they will fix any damage to the property caused by their work.
To be neighborly, you should have the crew remove the entire tree and not just enough to make it safe.
Had you done something upon discovery of the dead tree, the neighborly thing to do would have to have offered to pay half the cost to remove the hazard, and, if refused, to have paid the total cost.
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wrote:

This can be a complex issue. Keep your children out of the yard during storms or a windy day. Keep and date a few pictures of the tree and let the neighbor know it is a hazard. Wait for his reaction, perhaps a week or two, then contact a city official who knows about these situations. You should NOT have to pay to remove a neighbor's tree.
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I agree with almost everything Phisherman said, but why do you think a city official would want or need to insert themselves into what seems to be a dispute as between two neighbours?
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clipped

It didn't sound like it was yet a "dispute". A "dangerous tree" is a code violation in my city and the city can remove the hazard if the owner does not. Funny how folks can post a question about a significant matter and then "disappear" and don't answer follow-up questions. It is conceivable that the tree is now situated such that the OP would be responsible for removal, and not the owner of the property from whence the tree came....we may never know. It would be interesting to hear how it is resolved.
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Doug Brown wrote:

Because that's what city officials DO.
Normally they LOOK for things busy themselves with; someone coming to them with a problem is a bonus.
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BTK was in code enforcement.
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I spoke with an insurance adjuster tonight that is licensed in every state, Canada and most countries in Europe. So I trust their opinion, which is strictly from an insurance standpoint.
First question: Did you ever discuss the dead tree with the neighbor? Or him with you? (Was he aware that it might be dangerous?)
If yes: Call your insurance company. They will remove the tree and collect from the neighbor or his insurance. There may be a limit to how much they will pay to dispose of the debris.
If no: Is the fence yours? (Yes means it is covered by your insurance) If yes: Is the dead tree touching the fence? If yes: Your insurance will pay to remove the tree to prevent addtional damage to insured property. No coverage for your tree unless you have a landscaping rider.
If the fence is the nieghbor's and the tree is touching it, his insurance will pay to remove it.
If the neighbor was not made aware of the danger and the tree is not toughing the fence then God intended for you to have that tree, dead or not. It is your responsibility to remove it.
But, God may not be finished with the tree. A late, windy night the tree could fall farther and contact the fence. Then, whoever owns the fence needs to call their insurance company.
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wrote:

If you can get a statement from the tree trimmer that he informed the neighbor the tree was dead or dangerous, call your insurance company. They will hadle it for you.
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You first asked about this 3 weeks ago. People giving opinions suggested a variety of options, with most of them suggesting you simply go talk to the neighbor first. And if that didn't work, then to check with the municipality code enforcement official, who may treat it as a public safety issue.
Since the tree is obviously dead and a danger, I think the neighbor would likely be responsible for damage if it occurs to other property owners when and if it finally falls. That situation is different from a tree with no obvious problems that falls, in which case the person who's property if falls from is generally not responsible. However, you aren't going to get a for sure answer here, as we don't even know where you live, let alone what the local laws may be. If you want a real legal opinion, talk to a local attorney. The attorney aside from giving an opinion, will most likely want to write a letter. And be aware that who may be responsible and actually establishing that and collecting are two different things. Since you now say a second property is in danger too, why haven't you and that owner just gone over and discussed it instead of engaging it open ended "what if" speculation?
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