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  • Writer's pictureAttorney Jason A Greller

Trees and neighbors: an overview of the rights of Wisconsin property owners.

In Wisconsin, landowners have certain rights and responsibilities concerning trees on their property, on their property line, and on their neighbor's property. It's essential to understand these rights to maintain good relations with neighbors and avoid potential legal disputes.

  1. Trees on your property: As a property owner in Wisconsin, you have the right to maintain, trim, or remove trees located entirely within your property boundaries. This includes the right to cut down branches or roots that extend into your property from a neighboring property, as long as doing so does not unreasonably harm or kill the tree. You are also responsible for any damages caused by trees on your property, such as injuries or property damage resulting from falling branches.

  2. Trees on the property line: When a tree trunk straddles the property line between two properties, it is considered a boundary tree, and ownership is shared between the two landowners. Both landowners are responsible for the tree's maintenance and have the right to trim branches and roots that extend onto their respective properties. However, any actions taken must not unreasonably harm or kill the tree. Before removing a boundary tree, both landowners must consent to the removal.

  3. Trees on a neighbor's property: If a tree is located entirely on a neighbor's property, you generally do not have the right to trim or remove the tree without the neighbor's permission. However, you have the right to trim branches and roots that extend onto your property, as long as doing so does not unreasonably harm or kill the tree. If a tree on your neighbor's property poses a risk to your property or safety, it's a good idea to communicate your concerns with your neighbor and seek a mutually agreeable solution.

If disputes arise concerning trees and property boundaries, it's essential to consult with a knowledgeable attorney specializing in property law in Wisconsin. They can help you understand your rights and obligations and navigate any legal issues that may arise.

Please note that this information is for general purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. To get legal advice tailored to your specific situation, consult with a licensed attorney in Wisconsin.

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