Dealing with neighbors is always tough, especially if the neighbor doesn’t want to take responsibility for a boundary fence. The case may be worse if the neighbor has already built their fence inside your property.
If you’re ever in such a situation, the Wyoming state laws on fencing are there to help.
Rules concerning fence permits are different in every town or city code. However, in most areas, you’ll only need a building permit for fences greater than 7 feet.
Regulations in other cities such as Jackson, Rawlins, Worland, and Evanston demand that all new fences require a permit. In areas where there are no fence permit requirements, you might still need a zoning permit.
Check with your local building department if you aren’t sure of your requirements.
Can I replace an existing fence without a permit?
According to most city and county fence regulations, you can’t. Even for cases where you’re only replacing an existing fence, a permit is still required. Major repairs affecting more than 50% of the fence may also demand a fence permit.
If you replace the fence without a permit, you might incur extra costs on inspection fees and penalties.
How tall can a privacy fence be in Wyoming?
A fence in a residential district is restricted to a maximum of 4 feet (if it’s 40% open) on the front yard and 6 feet on the side and rear yard setbacks. Solid front yard fences are capped at 3 feet.
Some districts allow an 8 feet height limit for fences on commercial lots.
If you require a taller fence than these regulations, you’ll need to present a case to your local planning and zoning board.
Who owns the fence on property lines in WY?
The Wyoming laws consider every adjoining neighbor of the fence as a benefactor and thus joint owner unless otherwise agreed.
Under Wyo. Stat.§ 11-28-106, each neighbor has to contribute one-half of their respective shares to the costs of maintenance and repairs. In the same manner, one owner can’t remove the fence unless both parties agree.
How do you know where the property boundary is?
Most homeowners find the details of their property boundaries in their deeds. These documents contain the past survey data of the property and may also include past covenant agreements.
If you don’t have your deed, hiring a surveyor is the next best thing. Surveyors make life easier by accounting for all historical images and plat map data before setting stakes or other markers on the boundary lines.
You may also visit your local recorder or assessor’s office if your land lies on platted land. For some districts, the plat maps are usually uploaded online on the town government’s website.
Can my neighbor build a fence on the property line?
Yes! Your neighbor can build a fence on the property line, but he/she will first need to consult with you. This is because a fence on the property line can be used as a partition fence, subjecting you to sharing responsibility.
As long as the fence being constructed is legal or lawful as per the Wyo. Stat. § 11-28-102 and adheres to any zoning regulations, the neighbor is okay.
Keep in mind; The Wyoming laws allow the neighbor to take legal action against you to receive compensation (half the costs of fence construction) and share maintenance, even if you don’t want this fence.
There are also penalties and fines for owners who leave open, break down or destroy the gate or any bars provided to be used by the public.
Can I put up a fence on my side of the property line?
Yes! Based on how the Wyoming law is structured, you can construct a fence on your side of the property line with no opposition. Your only task will be to conduct a survey if you don’t know the exact position of your boundaries.
You’ll also need to observe any local Homeowner’s Association rules regarding the fence height, setback, materials, and appearance.
Is Wyoming a fence in or fence out state?
The Wyoming fence law is quite unique in that it strives to address both rural and urban fence issues.
For that case, it’s generally considered a fenced-out state, where a property owner has the freedom to build a fence to keep livestock out of their property.
Additionally, if you’re a livestock owner, ‘fenced in’ laws apply with regards to sheep. You’re expected to build a fence to keep your sheep within your property.
This means that your neighbor won’t be liable for any damages on your property caused by their cattle or other animals besides the sheep. You’ll only receive compensation if any of the animals break through your lawful partition fence.
How to handle fence disputes in Wyoming
When fence disputes arise, the best step is to try and come to a mutual agreement. But if this doesn’t seem to work, the other route is by filing civil suits. Whether you’re dealing with encroachment or a construction issue, going to court may help work the issue quickly and permanently.
Suppose one neighbor fails or refuses to contribute towards the fence; you can simply cover their costs then sue them to gain compensation for the fence.
What is a spite fence?
Spite fences are any fencing structures put up by one property owner to irritate and annoy them. The fences are usually tall (sometimes violating local zoning codes) and relatively ugly.
All you’ll need to prove is that the fence was constructed out of ill motive. You’ll also require to show how it’s affecting your enjoyment of your property.
Wyoming boundary fence laws at a glance
This table provides an overview of some of the state laws governing Wyoming’s fence laws and links to their original documents.
|Statues||Construction and Maintenance of Partition Fences||Lawful Fences||Neglect to Close Fences;|
|Construction and Maintenance of Partition Fences: WY Stat 11-28-106|
Lawful fences generally: WY Stat 11-28-102
Fences- Misdemeanor- neglect to close fences; penalty: WY Stat 6-9-202
|The owner of any lawful fence that is/becomes a partition fence may require the other person to pay for one-half of the actual cost or what it would cost to construct the fence. In case the other person refuses, the owner may initiate a civil action against them.||Lawful fences are those that are made well enough to keep livestock out. Typical example: Three-line barbed wire fence. Pole or board fences are also acceptable.||It is a misdemeanor to leave the gate on a lawful fence open, even if it is accidental.|
Keep in mind; These laws are bound to change with time depending on the new legislation, federal court decisions, and other initiatives. Use the information provided above as a guide and research the latest regulations in your municipality.
The partition fence between homeowners is under the ownership of all the neighbors using, enjoying, or whose properties are enclosed by the fence. The law requires each party to contribute one-half the cost of construction and maintenance of the fence.
While there’s no law addressing spite fences in Wyoming, you can file a suit in the courts to have the fence abated or even receive damages money.
Not really. The law is clear regarding fence ownership. If your neighbor hasn’t asked for your permission to hang anything on your fence, that’s considered a criminal act.
You’ll need to ask for your neighbor’s permission. Since the fence belongs to the neighbor, you can’t alter anything about it, including the paints. When you want to change or repaint your side of the fence, just check with your neighbor and ask them for consent.
Yes! Using partition fences isn’t compulsory for any property owner in Wyoming. If you don’t want to share a fence with your neighbor, you can construct a fence on your side of the neighbor’s fence.
You’ll still have to observe any fencing regulations in your neighborhood.
The good thing about the Wyoming fence laws is that you can sue the neighbor to contribute an equal amount towards the construction and maintenance of the fence even if they don’t want it.