Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby wbmkk » Tue Jul 26, 2016 12:03 pm

I have a garage, which has been lying empty for quite a number of years.

Next door is open land, owned by a private company

I now want to use the garage, but as there were trees next to it, I asked for them to be removed as I thought they were maybe causing damage to the wall.

The which has just been done.

I see today that the tops were removed but the base and the roots haven't been touched.

Please see the images below. the cracks go all the way to the top .. I took several picturss but just uploaded a high level one her as well as the base picture.

I'm about to speak to the land owner and ask why the base wasn't removed. I would imagine the simple reason is that they didn't want the wall to fall.

Surely this can help me, to at least get some of the repair costs covered. As the garage is separate to the house, it is not insured so any repairs fall on me alone.

Am I correct in my assumption and what should my next step be please.

I thank you for any advice provided.

Image

Image
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Re: Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby COGGY » Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:19 pm

Hi
I believe that you can only claim for damage caused after you have made the tree owner aware of the problem. I am sure someone will come along to correct me if wrong. I have only gleaned my information regarding this from reading on this site. Regards Coggy
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Re: Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby Collaborate » Tue Jul 26, 2016 6:50 pm

I don't think that is the sole consideration, Coggy.

You can sue for damage caused from the point by which it would have been apparent to a reasonable observer that damage was being caused.
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Re: Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby ukmicky » Tue Aug 02, 2016 11:37 pm

The law says they are responsible if they knew or should have known damage was being caused. That is a high hurdle for you to jump if you wanted to sue them for the damage. They are not expected to walk around their land and pull back all the branches to see what is happening behind.

They have probably removed enough to show a court they have acted reasonable in order to try and prevent a continuing nuisance without causing damage to the wall . If you want them to go further and I was them ,as the plant has now basically become part of the structure I would want you to sign something removing any responsibility from me should damage occur to the wall when its removed .

It can also sometimes be very hard to kill off some tree roots ,especially if the growth is in places that you can fully access . Removal of one part can cause new shoots to spring up in places where there was previously nothing in an attempt by the tree to survive .

Sometimes it can be better to leave something that will allow future plant growth but in directions and places that can be easily controlled.
Advice given is not legally qualified and you are advised to gain a professional opinion
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Re: Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby Holst2 » Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:34 am

ukmicky wrote:The law says they are responsible if they knew or should have known damage was being caused. That is a high hurdle for you to jump if you wanted to sue them for the damage. They are not expected to walk around their land and pull back all the branches to see what is happening behind.

Surely the law says they are reponsible if they knew or should have known that damage was likely. Any reasonable person would know that damage is likely if a tree is growing that close to a neighbour's wall. They dont have to pull the branches back to know that damage is likely to occur. This is what my insurer told me. I am not suggesting one can suit before damage occurs, but when it does occur the tree owner is liable if they could have reasonably foreseen the damage.

Wbmkk - do you have a picture of the whole wall?? My builder told me the source of this kind of problem is usually at right angles to the line of the crack. The crack seems to be going up to the top right so the source of the crack could be subsidence on the bottom right of the crack. Do you have any damaged drains nearby as water leaking into the soil can cause subsidence??
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Re: Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby ukmicky » Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:29 pm

Surely the law says they are reponsible if they knew or should have known that damage was likely.




Only the OP and their neighbour know how obvious it was that something was growing which was causing damage to the wall and then only a court can decide if the neighbour knew or should have known . Most court cases for root damage are fought and won when there is a cause to sue for a continuing nuisance because foreseeability is a lot easier to prove once the tree owner has been made aware of the problem. In these type of cases the answer is very rarely black and white and neither side can be sure of victory.



Having said that in this case there are other questions that need to be asked before you even get to the question of liability , like whos tree is it (if it can be classed as a tree). Looking at that picture I would say the OP is responsible for it because it looks like its growing out of their wall foundations and brickwork into the neighbours land ,causing a nuisance to the neighbour.
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Re: Wall damaged by neighbours trees .. see picture

Postby arborlad » Thu Aug 04, 2016 10:12 am

It's not helping having three threads about the one garage:

viewtopic.php?t=15623

viewtopic.php?f=12&t=15799
arborlad

smile...it confuses people
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