California  |  Real Estate Law

Legal Question

Asked on: 6/08/13, 12:26 pm

For the past 10 years I have battled with our neighbors to trim their palm trees as they were laden with dead fronds from the years of growth. This neglect ultimately cost us the life of our dog due to it being a haven for coyotes, damage to our cars due to the infestation of rats living in the trees, and an overall violation of LA county fire codes, as well as interference with the peace as enjoyment of our back yard as they prevented us from achieving a view which they blocked. In California there is a law “spite fence” which states that an overly tall fence, or structure (including trees or hedges) in the nature of a fence, constructed or planted between adjacent lots by a property owner who desires to annoy a neighbor is illegal. Over the years they would call the police on us numerous occasions whenever my husband and I attempted to clean this area. She told many of the neighbors we were peeping toms etc. Earlier this this they sold their house, while they were in escrow, my husband and I attempted once again to trim the trees as we believed we were given permission by way of a tree trimming company who was doing work on their property. Half way thru the job of trimming the trees, they showed up to the property and again called the police. This time she pressured the police to press charges of vandalism and trespassing of which the police did. My husband and I are now dealing with the criminal matter. It appears the CA is looking to get rid of this matter through a civil compromise. We would have to pay them $2,400.00. This is outrageous as the house sold and there are no damages, just some phony bill for $2,000.00 for an aborist. It appears this is the only way we can make this case go away, and this is to pay them off. "money buys you justice" Anyway, being that I am probably going to settle this in this manner, would this preclude me from seeking damages on my own, in small claims based on Civil Code 841.1 Further, Civil Code 3502 allows an injured person the right to abate a nuisance as well as Civil Code 3503 which allows the person the right to enter upon "his land", with reasonable notice. I feel I have a tremendous case against them just based on civil code 841.1. However, does the criminal complaint foreclose me from any further action against these malicious people?

Thank you,

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