Protecting the view from your property

September 5, 2017

In Queensland, there is no general right to a view. It is often the case that a person buys (usually paying extra) a property for the view, then later a neighbour plants tree which grow to obstruct that view. What can be done? The Neighbourhood Disputes Resolution (Dividing Fences and Trees) Act 2011 may offer some relief to the general principle that there is no right to a view. The Tribunal can make orders in relation to trees which seriously interfere with the enjoyment of the property on an on-going basis. However, the Act gives a right to a view from a dwelling that existed at the time that a neighbour acquired his land. So it’s important to establish who got there first, and whether the complainant actually had the view that may now have been lost. If the facts are made out, the Tribunal can order the removal of the trees, or that they be trimmed or even regularly pruned to a certain height. It can order who should pay those costs.