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Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

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  • Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

    My neighbor recently had a very large tree removed from his back yard during the day while my wife and I were both at work. In order to do the tree removal, they used my driveway to park the equipment used, and as far as I can tell, did the entire removal via my driveway.

    Upon returning home, we found the following: Oil or hydraulic fluid stains running the length of our driveway (concrete driveway). Scratches and drag marks running the length of the railing of our porch which appear from dragging the tree branches along it. Garage roof covered with branches and damaged gutter on our garage which was under about 1/3 of the tree. Several items from our driveway including trashcans and a portable basketball net relocated to our back yard. Basketball backboard damaged, broken from frame. Wood pile in our backyard knocked down. Sawdust throughout our driveway, into my garage and backyard.

    We were never notified of any plans to do this work, and my neighbor has simply told me I should call the contractor he hired. I have called the contractor and expressed my displeasure, pointed out some of the damage and told them they had no permission to be on my property.

    The contractor has since called me once and left voicemail that he'll be in the neihborhood some time next week and will come by to clean up the sawdust. No mention of any of hte damage he caused, or plans to repair it.

    My first question is who is liable, my neighbor, or the contractor. Second is what steps I should take to have repairs and cleanup done? I don't want them on my property again when I'm not here, but they have not responded to my second message that I want them here when I am and to call to schedule.

    Any input is greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    Re: Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

    Based on what you say here, you could file suit against both of them (or at least threaten to do so) in small claims court or in regular court; filing in small claims court is easier and requires no could try to collect all of the costs and damages that you suffered due to their behavior...


    • #3
      Re: Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

      adverse possession is the term


      • #4
        Re: Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

        The length of time required for adverse possession in title varies - it could be as short as a few years or could run for twenty years or more. Typically public entities must establish a longer period of possession than individuals. Some states have adopted a rule which requires the adverse possessor to pay taxes each year on the land.

        The possession must be open for all to see.

        The possession must be exclusive to him or her (e.g., the fence in the above example, a driveway, road, etc.)

        The possession must be hostile to the actual owner of the land.

        To gain title to land through adverse possession requires strict compliance with the law, but can have dramatic impact upon land ownership rights.

        An encroachment could result in title to your property being transferred to an adverse possessor. Under these circumstances, you might have to bring a lawsuit for trespass in order to prevent your neighbor from getting title to your land through adverse possession.


        • #5
          Re: Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

          Thanks for the input everyone. I was able to get a monetary settlement based on the damage estimates in addition to the various costs related to cleanup. My attorney contacted the contractor's insurance company for settlement.

          Process took approximatly 1 month.


          • #6
            Re: Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

            I had a similar situation, with no damage to my home, but potential. A large Oak Tree was removed from our neighbors back yard with a crane that carried large sections of tree truck directly over our house. If I hadn't have been late for work and came home early that day, I would have never known about the danger our home was in. Would this hold the same ground?


            • #7
              Similiar situation

              I recently had a tree contractor remove several trees in my yard. During the process, their truck blew a hydraulic line and left oil all over the yard. What's more is that they pulled down our asphalt driveway and left oil all over the driveway. They didn't even bother to tell me until I got home that night and called them. I've tried numerous products to get it out but nothing really works. My question is "are they legally responsible" for cleaning it up? They don't seem too cooperative at this point and I haven't paid them yet for the bill. Any advice would be appreciated... Thanks.


              • #8
                Re: Neighbor used my driveway for tree removal

                Crane Operators go through a 4 year course and are highly trained on how to control thier loads especially while in residential areas.
                I work in consctruction and we deal with cranes all the time, and never once have I seen anything go wrong with one. Your house was in no danger and I doubt you would get far with any sort of suit.
                Thats why crane drivers make 75-150 dollars an hour.


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