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  1. #1

    Default Can My Neighbor Legally Remove the Fence That Separates Our Properties

    My question involves real estate located in the State of: NJ
    The fence connecting my property and my neighbor's is within his property line and is his fence. He and I recently engaged in a dispute about the fence and he has threatened to remove the fence outright. Can he do that? Wouldn't that prohibit me from enjoying my property (I have a dog) or is my only option at that point to put up my own fence? Would he have to split the cost with me? Would he have to notify me before he removes the fence?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Can My Neighbor Legally Remove the Fence That Separates Our Properties

    the only NJ laws I can find that could possibly be considered would be regarding the maintaining of animals. I do not know if it stretches to include dogs:

    4:20-7. Duty to make and maintain portion of partition fence
    Where the lands of any 2 or more persons shall join each other and 1 or more of them are using said lands for the pasturage or keeping of animals, each of them so using said lands shall make or amend and maintain a just proportion of the partition fence between said lands except when all of said persons shall choose to let their adjoining lands lie vacant and open, but no such adjoining owner shall be required to make, amend or maintain any portion of any such partition fence, unless he is using his adjoining lands for said purposes.
    if one can apply the statute, unless the neighbor needs the fence to restrain animals, there is no requirement he maintain a fence nor share the costs of a fence with you.

    Sounds like you need to plan on building a fence if you want one.

    as to notification: should he be aware his fence is constraining your dog and he removes the fence with that knowledge and no notice to you, should your dog escape, you likely could place some liability on him. Since there would be no law specifying the timing of a notice, as long as he does not remove the fence while your dog is actively being constrained, a simple note or yelling across the yard to you:

    taking down the fence today

    would suffice as adequate notice.

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