February 6, 2019

Failure to Prevent Transfer of Tree Debris Does Not Support a Nuisance Action

A married couple brought a nuisance action against their neighbors because debris from a tree on the latter's property caused staining on the former's property.  The trial court ruled that the married couple did not establish actionable nuisance (an unreasonable interference with another's use and enjoyment of property), and the Court of Appeals recently affirmed that ruling in an unpublished opinion.  The Court pointed out that a number of other courts, including the Washington Supreme Court in 1921(!), have indicated in past related cases that the failure of a landowner to prevent the blowing or dropping of leaves, branches, and sap from a healthy tree located wholly on his or her property onto a neighbor's property does not constitute a nuisance.