My neighbor has a tree planted very near to our property line. The tree is completely in their yard, but the roots from it are running across my yard and really tearing up my lawn. My question is, if I were to dig up the roots that are on my property and the tree eventually dies, would I be held responsible for having to cut it down and potentially replacing it?
This is really a legal question, and not an arboricultural question. It is generally understood that a property owner has the right to prune and or treat the portions of a tree that are on his/her property, as long as those treatments do not cause any adverse conditions. If pruning the roots on your side of the property line cause stress or decline of the tree, you could be help liable.
There are degrees to which tree roots can be pruned and not negatively affect a tree, or a minimal amount of soil could be spread over roots, and seeded.
As I said in the beginning, this is a legal question, and you should consult a qualified real estate attorney.
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