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Neighbor Law

A guide discussing issues that may arise between neighbors on topics such as fencing, trees and noise.


Neighbors & Trees

A tree that crosses over a boundary line can cause a lot of confusion between neighbors as to who owns the tree and whose responsibility it is to maintain. While Texas does not have a specific state statute, there have been court cases over the years that address this topic. 

The location of the trunk generally determines who owns the tree though there can be exceptions to this rule. A neighboring landowner has the right to trim or cut off the limbs or branches of the tree to the property line. Even though the neighbor has the right to trim the tree, they could be sued if they injure the tree or other property in the process.

Below you will find references to areas of Texas law related to trees. If you find these statutes difficult to understand, please see the "Understanding the Law" resources below for a "plain English" explanation of these laws.

Texas Law

In addition to state law, cities may have local laws regulating trees within their area. See our Municipal Laws and Ordinances page for assistance locating your local laws.

Property owners' associations may also have rules that regulate tree maintenance. To learn more about the restrictive covenants of a property owners' association, see our Property Owners’ Association guide.

Understanding the Law

E-Books at the State Law Library

You can borrow the e-books below with your library account. Don't have a library account? Texas residents can register for a library account online! Learn more about how to register online.