University of Maryland Extension

Frequently Asked Questions: Can I Cut My Neighbor’s Tree Back From Our Property Line?

Paul Goeringer

This is not a substitute for legal advice.  Image by Edwin Remsberg

            Many of you may have neighbors with trees or bushes growing near the property line.  Branches might be impacting equipment you use in fields, growing into property line fences, or dropping branches on your property after storms.  The question is often asked, “Can I trim my neighbor’s tree?”  The answer, at least in Delaware and Maryland, is that a neighboring property owner has the right to trim tree limbs, bushes, or other vegetation growing over the property line back to the property line.  The neighboring property owner cannot trespass to do so, and may only trim from his/her property.

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