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Property Line and Fence Laws in Kentucky

They say people should be at war with their vices and at peace with their neighbors. Unfortunately, there are situations where the inverse is true and neighbors find themselves in the heat of battle. Although the source of conflicts may differ, property line and fence law disputes are typical examples of situations that can ruin the harmony of a neighborhood. Sometimes neighbors can work out their differences and come to a solution to their problems. However, when that's not possible then Kentucky's state laws can provide assistance.

Property Line and Fence Laws in Kentucky: First Steps

A property dispute can begin with a question about the property line. If this is in dispute, you may have to conduct a survey to determine where your property actually ends. This is important information to know prior to constructing a fence as it can affect the exact location and ownership of the fence.

In Kentucky, owners with adjoining property can enter into an agreement to construct a division fence. In this agreement, the owners are both responsible for repair costs needed to maintain the fence. If you put the agreement in writing, sign and acknowledge it, and enter the record with your county clerk's office, then the agreement has the same effect as a deed.

Kentucky Tree Laws

Issues related to trees are another area that can cause neighbor disputes. Generally, you should be cautious when tree trimming even when trimming up to the property line. Use your local ordinances as a guide since the laws vary throughout Kentucky. You don't have to cut down or destroy a tree to be in violation of the law. If you damage your neighbor's tree, you can be held liable to them for triple the costs of what they paid for the tree or what it would cost to replace the tree.

Kentucky Property Line and Fence Laws at a Glance

The chart below provides a summary of state laws related to property line and fence laws in Kentucky, including links to important code sections.


Lawful Fences
  • A lawful fence is a strong and sound fence that will not allow cattle to get in.
  • The lawful fence is made of various materials (including wire and plank, iron, stone, brick) and with specific dimensions named in the statute.

Division Fences

  • Owners of adjoining property can agree to construct division fences between them and maintain repairs.
  • When a division fence exists by agreement, each party shall keep a lawful fence on his/her portion of the line.
  • If a party fails to keep a lawful fence, then they are liable for all damages to trees, crops, livestock, etc. to the other party that occurs from trespassing livestock over the division fence.
  • Either party is liable for damages in the event that their livestock breaks through the fence; the fence must be a lawful fence.

Tree Damage

  • If a person cuts down/damages an owner's tree, that person is liable to the owner for triple the value of the damages done.

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Property Line and Fence Laws in Kentucky: Related Resources

Resolve Your Property Dispute With a Real Estate Attorney Near You

It's difficult when you have conflicts with your neighbors because your home is supposed to be your refuge from the world. If you're experiencing a neighbor dispute involving a property line or fence issue, then you should consider contacting a local real estate attorney to learn more about your legal options.

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