What it takes to cut down a tree in the yard

Is it possible to cut down a tree in the yard of an apartment building and how the cutting of trees on the adjacent territory is carried out?

The legislation of the Russian Federation has provisions for punishment for unauthorized destruction of green spaces. According to the idea, they are designed to protect the nature and human health, because greenery contributes to the purification of the environment. However, there is also the flip side of the question. Cutting down trees becomes an almost insurmountable problem. And sometimes you need to prune the trunk or cut it down completely to prevent trouble.

Let’s look at the rules of communication with the authorities to clear the yards of apartment buildings from the interfering plantings. Where to go in order not to receive a fine. What are the penalties for unauthorized logging in 2021.


Work to clear the yard of emergency plantings must be based on applicable standards. They are described in the following acts:

The authority to regulate relations in the field of protection of green spaces is delegated to local authorities. Consequently, the specific rules for cutting down disturbing or broken trees are contained in municipal ordinances. The latter are based on the norms of federal and regional legislation. So, the rules are the same in all municipalities of the country (there may be nuances).

For information: Liability for the illegal cutting of a tree or shrub growing on municipal or state land (provided that it is classified as a forest/woodland park area) is provided by Article 8.28 Code of Administrative Offences (CAO).

Destruction of plants of valuable species is regulated separately. This includes trees listed in the Red List. In addition, municipalities can approve a list of plants for which a special protection regime is in place.

Federal Law of 10.01.2002.FZ “On Environmental Protection”

Article 8.28 of the Administrative Offences Code “Illegal cutting, damaging forest plantations, or unauthorized digging of trees, shrubs, and vines in forests”

Tree cutting. What’s better: use your own hands or hire a crew?

The first thing that comes to mind is to call specially trained people who will not just come and cut down the plant, dig out the stump and roots of the tree, but will take them away with them so that it no longer gives you any trouble. But such services can be quite expensive, especially if your plot is far from large settlements and garden areas.

However, you can save money on the cutting of trees by doing it yourself. If the tree is big, it is best to take a chainsaw or an electric saw. you don’t have to buy the tool at all, it is given out at special points for rent. It will reduce your manual, hard physical work and save you time. But you can do without the usual “push-and-pull” types of hand saws as well.

Safety rules and preparation for sawing

Before you start cutting a tree, the first thing to do is to assess the safety of yourself and others. Having roughly calculated the height of the tree and the trajectory of its fall, assess how close to the place are the power lines, roads, no nearby buildings.

Before the sawing process put on a hard hat. it can protect you from injuries in case of unforeseen events. It is also best to wear gloves, close-fitting, splinter-proof shoes and non-slip shoes. It is better to choose a day for sawing when the weather is calm and favorable so that natural forces do not interfere with your work.

These rules for safe felling are particularly important if you want to cut a tall, strong tree such as a pine tree. Disposal of such trees, especially if they grow in close proximity to houses, of course, is better to entrust to professionals.

After the estimation step, determine the height of the tree, at least approximately, and the slope if any. Keep a radius of two times the height of the tree and clear away anything that could be damaged by the tree being felled. After that, it is best to cut down large, lush branches of the tree. these can be reached with a ladder.

Safety rules

Deciding how to cut down a tree in the yard is not enough, you must have all the safety rules for such work.

  • Never operate the chainsaw with one hand. Always hold it firmly with both hands. Note that the thumb of the main hand should always be under the handle of the tool.
  • Do not cut wood with the tip of the cutter blade. Doing so will cause great vibration and increase the risk of serious injury.
  • Smoking while operating the tool is strictly prohibited.
  • Never leave a chainsaw where there are animals or children near it.


In some cases, in order to cut down unwanted, interfering trees on your property, you must have official, written permission from the local government or other authorized agencies. There are several such cases:

  • If the plot is located on Forest Fund land.
  • If the land is the property of the municipality.
  • And when the land is federal property.

The tree may not grow on the land plot itself, but it may hinder the passage to it, the access. In this case we cut down bushes and trees if we have a permit. A citizen interested in cutting down a plantation makes an appeal, explaining in it the reason for his desire to cut down the tree. Before you do this, you need to find out who owns the land with the tree.

How a citizen can check the owner of a plot of land? You can apply to the local authorities, the department of the cadastral service. It is also possible to buy the ownership of land with forest plantations. In order to clear land for construction, you need to go to the municipality, explain the situation, ask for permission to cut down.

How to get a

If it is illegal to cut down trees, the owner of the property will be punished, whether or not they were aware of the restrictions in the law. When it is necessary to cut down trees on a suburban or garden plot, where to apply? First of all, you need to go to the local administration and resolve this issue:

  • Make an appeal (statement) in any form.
  • When drafting the document, you need to specify to whom it is submitted, who is the applicant.
  • Below the name of the document, for example, “Application” is indicated.
  • Then you must write the address of the property and its location.
  • You are asked to allow the trees on the property to be cut down.
  • It is important to state the age, size, and species of the tree.
  • It is also necessary to write the reason why it became necessary to cut down.

In the application it is important to specify what trees must be cut, where they grow. Most often a permit is issued, it is also called a “logging ticket” or a “logging order”. It is necessary to draw up a contract with the specialists who have made the cut, the.

Professional companies that provide tree felling services will definitely require the customer to show a “cutting ticket”. Otherwise, they can become as much of a violator of the law as their customer, the owner of the plot.

WARNING! Permission for cutting can be issued by the Department of Natural Resources of the local administration or by the Department of Nature. But in some cases the decision is made by other departments authorized for these functions.

For example, a positive or negative answer to cutting trees on a particular land may be issued by the Department of Public Utilities.

How to apply? This can be done in person when visiting the administration of the local government, through a proxy. There is also the possibility of filing an application through the “Single Window” service. The application is submitted with several documents, including the one that will confirm the ownership of the plot. It can also be an extract from the Unified State Register of Natural Resources.

Before giving permission, the authorized body can appoint an expertise. A specialist will come to the site, inspect the object of felling, assess the risks. Most often, fruit trees and young trees (up to 30-50 years old) will not require a permit.


When there are trees growing on the property that belong to the forest plantation, you need to be as careful as possible in the matter of cutting.

It should be clarified what category of land the plot belongs to, what types of permitted use has. Forest trees cannot be cut down unauthorized, even if they are located on a private plot.

Such a restriction is established by the Forest Code of the Russian Federation. Felling a tree without a permit is punishable by a fine. Amounts of the fine do not vary greatly in different regions, so you can take the indicators, for example, of the Moscow region, for familiarization.

In this region, you will have to pay between 3,500 and 4,000 for illegal felling of trees. This is the amount of monetary punishment for an individual. If a legal entity commits illegal actions, it will pay up to 300,000, and for officials. up to 50,000 such amounts are defined in Article 8.28 CAO


When there are trees that are forest plantations on a property, you need to be as careful as possible when cutting them down.

You should find out what category of land the plot belongs to, what types of permitted use has. Do not cut down trees in the forest without permission, even if they are on a private property.

This limit is established by the Forest Code of the Russian Federation. Felling a forest without a permit is punishable by a fine. The amount of the fine in different regions does not differ much, so you can take the indicators, for example, the Moscow region, for familiarization.

In this region, you will have to pay between 3,500 and 4,000 for illegal cutting of trees. This is the amount of monetary punishment for a physical person. If a legal entity commits illegal actions, it will pay up to 300,000, for officials. up to 50,000 such amounts are defined in Article 8.28 CAO

When you can cut without a permit

You don’t usually need a permit if you cut down trees on your own property. But several conditions must be met:

  • The tree for the cut is not valuable and rare in relation to the breed.
  • The land is not adjacent to a forest and the trees cannot be considered a forest plantation.
  • No more than 1-2 trees can be felled.
  • The age of the plant is important (specific figures vary from region to region).
  • The trees are not located in a Red List animal or bird habitat region.
  • Neighbors and environmentalists do not protest against such cutting.

Remember that felling on your own property is mostly a private matter of the landowner. But every tree that is cut down without justification has a negative effect on the environment.

If possible, the number of green areas should also be restored.

Is it possible to cut down trees in the yard of the house?

Cities are maintained by public authorities, represented by the departments of beautification. They oversee the planting of trees, their condition and usefulness.

It is strictly prohibited to cut down trees in the yard! Such actions are considered arbitrariness and contrary to Order 13 of the Ministry of Regional Development and Trade of December 27, 2011:

  • Paragraph 8.6.6. Prohibits unauthorized cutting of city trees and shrubs;
  • Clause 8.6.10. obliges to charge the perpetrators with the cost of the damaged/cut plantings;
  • Paragraph 8.6.12. reports on compensation for damages from destruction of green areas;
  • Paragraph 8.6.15. requires a permit to cut down dead wood.

The order has been repealed and these regulations are no longer in effect. However, municipal authorities have adopted them. The above paragraphs are still relevant, they are applied in practice. But already in the framework of local acts.

Neighborhood area is a yard where there is a residential building, cars stand, people walk, other plantings are planted. If the felled tree turns out to be large, it could easily damage someone else’s property. Or worse, he’ll injure a bystander, up to and including death. Whoever cut it down will have to answer for what he did.

A resident of a multi-storey building had to endure a branchy poplar tree near his home for a long time. The thick crown of a tree blocked the windows and prevented sunlight from entering. The tenant had to “burn” the electricity even during the day. He was fed up with it, so he decided to cut down a poplar tree. He didn’t get a permit to cut it down. In order to cut the tree as fast as possible, he enlisted the help of an acquaintance. But the massive trunk of the poplar fell on his neighbor’s parked car. As a result, the Nissan Almera’s windshield was broken and the body and doors were dented. Angry car owner sued for property damage under Art. The court ordered the man and his friend to pay a fine of 120,000 rubles. At the same time, the perpetrators were fined for unauthorized tree cutting in the yard of the house.

Who is responsible for the cutting?

Taking into consideration that the adjacent territory is joint property of the residents of a multi-family building, cutting down trees must be agreed with all apartment owners.Article 23 of the Land Code of Ukraine. 44 If the residents consent to the cutting, they need a permit in the form of a cutting permit. The lack of a permit makes it difficult to destroy green spaces within the city limits.

You must also find out where the tree is located, i.e. on whose property. Situations can be different:

  • The land belongs to the residents of the MFB. cutting down trees and bushes should be done by the bodies of the Management Company (MC) or the Homeowners’ Associations (HOA). Felling is carried out at the request of the tenants. The bill for cutting down vegetation will be included in the bill for utility services.
  • The land belongs to the municipality. the city beautification department or the landscaping department is responsible for taking care of the area.

Citizens who live in the building do not participate in cutting down trees. All work is handled by specialist contractors. individuals or legal entities. Cutting requires assessment, equipment, gear, and technical skills. A crane may be required in the course of the work. Felling or pruning trees is usually assigned to telecommunication and energy industry workers.

Liability for unauthorized tree cutting

Spoiling, cutting, digging, and selling timber are environmental violations. There is not only administrative, but also criminal liability for such activities. Let’s see what the threat of unauthorized felling of greenery in the city limits.


Financial penalties are noted in Article 8.28 Code of Administrative Offenses (CAO). Sanctions are applied only in the case of minor damage. up to 5,000. Supervisors consider the species of tree, its age, height, trunk diameter, and value. The older the vegetation, the higher the penalty.

Illegal cutting of trees near multi-storey houses faces a threat:

  • citizens. a fine of 3,000 to 4,000;
  • officials. from 20,000 to 40,000;
  • Legal entities. up to 300 000.

Damage to the bark is considered damage to the tree. If the plantation is not destroyed, the administration may issue a fine of 500. The total amount is calculated taking into account the damage to the tree or shrub.

A distinction is made between not only felling, but also unauthorized planting of trees near the house. The rules are especially strict. Thus, in accordance with the clause of the Code of Administrative Offences of the Russian Federation on the Application of the Law of the Russian Federation on Administrative Offences of the Russian Federation. 3.6.1 The rules of creation, maintenance and protection of green areas, approved by the Moscow City Government by its decree of 10.09.2002 43-PP, Muscovites are prohibited from planting on the territory of the capital.

To avoid being fined, you need to get approval from the Moscow City Department of Natural Resources. Moscow. An application for landscaping can also be submitted to the district authority. Planting must not violate the rules of SanPiN Landscaping yards without a permit from the administration is fraught with a fine of 40 000 to 50 000.

Criminal penalties

The adjoining territory belongs to the city limits. Criminal penalties for tree felling, as in the case of the forest, are not available here. But the provisions of Article 168 of the Criminal Code “Intentional destruction or damage to property by negligence” apply. For example, if a tree fell on someone’s car or damaged a power line trimmer line.

Criminal liability for the careless “lumberjack:

  • A fine of 120,000 or more;
  • Withholding of income or other sources of earnings for a period of up to one year;
  • compulsory work for 20 days;
  • Corrective labor for up to 2 years;
  • Arrest or forced labor for up to 1 year;
  • imprisonment for 1 year.

So destroying trees in your yard may not be a misdemeanor, but a real crime. Courts usually impose a fine or compulsory labor. Perpetrators are assigned to the territory improvement authority. they are given saplings, shovels and gloves to plant new trees. Imprisonment for such violations of the law is extremely rare.

down, tree, yard

If forest plantations are damaged in the course of felling, Art. 260 UK Damage is counted according to the methodology of the Government: significant. from 5 thousand, large. from 50 thousand and especially large. from 150 thousand. The higher the damage, the more serious the punishment. Penalty for such acts from 500,000, and a real term of up to 3 years.

If a tree interferes with the construction of utilities

To obtain a logging ticket for the construction of new communications, you will need to provide a package of documents, including:

  • Technical documentation for the building;
  • A report on the degree of wear and tear (if obsolete pipes are being replaced);
  • The act of inspection of the area;
  • new communications installation project.

As strange as it may sound, trees have a higher priority for the commission than the construction of utilities. In reviewing this request, the commission will consider any options for how to preserve green space. And if no such solutions are found, the owner will be issued a logging ticket.

In addition, the permit is usually issued under certain conditions, according to which the executor, after completion of the work, is obliged to tidy up the territory and landscaping it.

Cut your own trees or have a firm do the cutting?

When all permits are obtained, there is no less important question to decide. do the work yourself or delegate the task to professionals?

Of course, in the presence of a chainsaw, to cut down an unnecessary tree seems easy, and most importantly. for free. However, the decision to save money can turn into serious damage, not only to neighboring buildings, power lines, which are in the field of fall, but to human life and health.

Working with a chainsaw for an untrained person is a fairly common cause of injury. In addition, without experience, it is quite difficult to set the trunk in the right direction of fall, and the bigger the tree, the greater the danger.

In addition, some mature, large trees may need to be cut:

  • special lifting equipment;
  • winch and ropes;
  • Special cutters for uprooting the stump;
  • and even climbing equipment.

It is therefore better to weigh in advance all the risks and difficulties involved. And if there is an objective need. trust a firm that specializes in such work.

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When you can saw without approval

Usually does not require a permit document, if we are talking about the cutting of trees on their own site. But a few conditions must be met:

  • The wood under the cut is not valuable and rare in relation to the breed.
  • The land is not adjacent to a forest and the trees on it cannot be classified as a forest plantation.
  • No more than 1 or 2 trees can be cut down.
  • The age of the plant is important (specific figures depend on the region).
  • The trees are not located in the region of animals or birds from the Red Book.
  • Neighbors and environmentalists do not protest against such cutting.

Keep in mind that cutting down trees on your own property is, more often than not, a personal matter for the landowner. But every tree felled without reason has a negative impact on the environment.

If possible, it is also necessary to restore the number of green spaces.

When this service is paid, and when it is illegal to demand money?

Cutting down trees is a very difficult and responsible job, so it can’t be not only free, but also cheap in principle. In addition, it is necessary to pay for the expertise when preparing the documents, as well as fully pay for the activities that will restore the number of trees.

The cutting down can therefore only be free of charge if someone else pays for it.

There is no unified federal law that regulates this situation, because all issues related to sawing down are in the competence of the local government. Therefore, in the vast majority of cases, the person who is most interested in this work pays for it.

For example, to remove dangerous plants along power lines must landowners, but they do not always do it, and sometimes they are not even aware of the threat that has arisen. Therefore, power engineers have to cut down such trees at the expense of the budget, because if they fall down, they will not only have to dispose of the trunks and branches, but also to repair the damage.

If an emergency tree grows in the yard of an apartment house, but on municipal land, i.e. it is located outside the territory of the house, but it threatens the health or property of any apartment owner, the local administration has to bear all the costs.

If the tree is growing on the adjacent territory, the AC can pay for its removal in two ways:

  • from the repair fees (not to be confused with payments for overhaul);
  • including the cost of all the work on the next month’s bill, or several months’ bill if the amount is very large.

In any case only the general meeting of apartment owners can choose the form of payment, the results of which should be a protocol with the signature of each owner.

The following are cases in which it is illegal to demand payment for the cutting or disposal of trees:

  • When eliminating natural disasters;
  • If the local government has refused to declare the tree an emergency and it has fallen or is severely bent;
  • if the emergency or dangerous tree is located on land belonging to another owner, including the municipality.

If the tree interferes with any work not related to the removal of source of increased danger, then the payment for the registration of documents (including the fee for the restoration of the green fund) and the cutting of the plant is taken by the person who needs this work.

In apartment buildings, first at a general meeting of residents to approve the plan of work, then select a representative who will deal with this, or entrust the work of the Managing Company.

down, tree, yard

And all this, as well as the consent to pay for all necessary works should be necessarily noted in the protocol of the tenants’ meeting and signed by all apartment owners.