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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    4

    Default How Close Can the Fence Supports Be to a Neighbors Property

    I live in NY and I have had my property surveyed and staked in preparation for putting up a fence in my backyard.

    My question is, when I dig the holes for the concrete support footers, they will be 6 to 8" in diameter, and will require a hole that is 22" wide

    I'll be using these:
    http://www.bigfootsystems.com/include/products.php

    If i want to place the fence (which is 3" thick) to be just an inch from my property line, I'd need to dig into the neighbors yard, and part of the cement footing would really be on/underneath their property.

    Would they be able to sue me? Would I have to move the fence?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,242

    Default Re: How Close Can the Fence Supports Be to a Neighbors Property

    You would be trespassing during construction and your structure would be an encroachment.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    El Dorado County, CA
    Posts
    338

    Default Re: How Close Can the Fence Supports Be to a Neighbors Property

    Check your state laws pertaining to boundary fences. In some states (like mine), neighbors are obligated to jointly maintain their boundaries, including fences. The law (here) seems to make the presumption that a fence between properties will be on the boundary as opposed to near it. If your laws are the same, then you would probably be OK for temporary construction activities normally associated with a fence, and for the permanent supports which are part of the fence.

    But states can vary widely on this, so agian, check NY statute.


    I just did a quick internet search of the law in NY. You can find it here:
    http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/LCsearch...codes%3Anycode

    Laws regarding fences appear to be in N.Y. TWN. LAW 300 et seq.

    At a quick glance, it appears that NY law allows you to put the fence on the boundary. But go to the link and review all the relevant sections to be sure.

    NY also seems to have an official classification of "fence viewer". I don't know if this is some sort of govt position, like Building Inspector, or a type of private service provider (the title and whole concept seems a little hokey and comical to me, but what do I know of NY?), and much of the Code regarding fences pertains to these Fence Viewers. So it might be a good idea to contact one or more. Since it is their job to view or inspect fences, they should be quite familiar with the laws governing the viewing of fences.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,242

    Default Re: How Close Can the Fence Supports Be to a Neighbors Property

    Good points.

    But with the question about being sued, it appears that the OP has not even brought up the subject with the neighbor at this point. That's really the next step.

    New York fence law, except for recent stuff about fencing swimming pools, etc, for public safety, appear to go back to the 1700's regarding division fences, which relate solely to livestock and animal control. All of the requirements relate to fencing of animals and livestock. No one else need apply.

    The fence viewer thing is another interesting twist, but only as it relates to a division fence. Rounding up and swearing in the fence viewers could be a chore as you are paying them a buck fifty per day.

    I wonder when the last town fence viewers made the rounds. I'd recommend to the OP that his surveyor be consulted initially, particularly regarding the fence viewers, and fence regulations in particular. And also a referral to a local attorney.

    As the proposed fence is not just some four strand barbed wire thing intended to keep animals in or out, but a much more substantial construction beyond what is necessary to fence livestock in or out, an agreement with the neighbor should be worked out or an attorney consulted for advice about what will possibly be an unwelcome fence.

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