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What should I do if my neighbor built a spite fence?

On Behalf of | May 22, 2023 | Real Estate Law

When we invest in our homes, we do our best to create a good environment for us and our families. This process includes creating connections with neighbors or just simply building a civil relationship with them. But not all neighbor relationships are friendly. Some neighbors, for unknown reasons, cause conflicts with their actions, an example of which is building spite fences.

Spite fences are fences built for the sole intention of maliciously annoying and causing harm to a neighbor and serve no other valuable purpose. This also applies to other structures like hedges and similar barriers. If you think your neighbor is building or has built a spite fence, below are possible remedies for you.

What are your options?

One of your remedies is to file a petition for an injunction with the court. An injunction is a court order to stop your neighbor from building a spite fence or direct them to remove the barrier if they are already in place. If your neighbor violates this order, they can face legal consequences, such as an arrest for contempt and fines.

Another remedy is to sue your neighbor for damages for the injury the fence has caused you and your property.

You have to prove the fence’s adverse effect

It is difficult to prove a neighbor’s intention in court. Fortunately, Connecticut measures one’s malice through the fence’s negative effects rather than the violator’s actual intention. Examples of adverse effects would be blocking the view or sunlight or restricting proper airflow. If the fence your neighbor built negatively affects your property value or quality of life, you can adopt the applicable remedy for you.