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Ash
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10915
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
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I would need some advice in relation to 3 separate tree issues

Customer Question

I would need some advice in relation to 3 separate tree issues I am having with my neighbours. All trees are located on their property:
- large group of trees planted close to the front end of my property causing damage to the boundary wall (which shows visible cracks).
- large bay tree at the mid-section of their property causing damage to the boundary wall (damage showing) and also preventing us from getting access to light
- recently planted chestnut tree towards the rear end of my property, which is too close to the boundary wall given its future size and will also prevent us from getting access to light in the future.
Please advise how best to proceed in terms of getting the damage remedied and the
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you.
Have you had a survey re the damage yet please?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No, we haven't commissioned a survey yet.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
I would get a survey done as to the damage and likely effects of the new tree. Present this to your neighbour and ask them to follow the recommendations (whatever they will be).
If they refuse then you can ask a Solicitor to write and them to carry out the work or say you will go to Court within 14 days if they dont. If they still refuse you can issue proceedings. You would need to use form N208:
http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n208-eng.pdf
And N244:
http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n244-eng.pdf
The Court would list the matter for hearing and decide whether to make them carry out the required works. If they refuse this is contempt of Court and they could be warned, fined or sent to prison.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks Alex. How do I deal with the right to light issue?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
That can also be dealt with by the survey.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Who would be undertaking the survey?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
An expert which is court approved, such as a tree surgeon or surveyor.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
How about if the surgeon can't get access to the neighbours property which is unlikely.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Then you would need a Court order for access. Ask them to try and do the survey without access but if not a Court order is required.
Does that clarify?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, how do i go about getting the court order?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Using N208 and N244 as above as well.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok both forms require quite a bit of detail. How do I go about completing them?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
You may need a Solicitor to help you with them.
They do require some detail about who is the Defendant, what order you want etc.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok what orders do you think I need based on what I have told you?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
You want an order to allow access to complete a survey. That is what you need at this stage.
Does that help?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could I also ask for an order requiring the tree to be pruned to get access to light at the same time?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
No, you need a survey for this first. The court wont grant you this without a survey looking at the impact.
Does that clarify?
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok. Do you know if it would make more sense to get the Council involved? I understand that one can also make submissions to the Council to look into trees and hedges?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
You can try but they tend to only get involved if the tree is dangerous or obstructing the highway.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What do you mean by "dangerous"?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Causing a hazard.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
A hazard to the public or to our property? How dangerous does the "hazard" need to be?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
The public. The council would just use common sense
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I hear there is also a filing under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act for high hedges that one can make. Would this work in this instance?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
No, because you are complaining about the state of the tree etc not that it is causing anti social behaviour,
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
There is a specific provision in the Anti Social Behaviour Act governing complaints about high hedges. Why wouldn't this be relevant here?
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
This is a high hedge provision - its not a tree. By all means try the Council but I do not think they will want to act and see this as a civil matter.
Alex
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
If this answers your question could I invite you rate my answer before you leave today.
If the system won’t let you please click reply.
Please bookmark my profile if you wish for future help: http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/expert-alexwatts/

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