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land drains - who's responsible?

Posted by sunshinedays - Created: 3 years ago
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4 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 4)

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Posted by 22150 Brittany - 3 years ago

If the land is designated as a champ humid the farmer cannot legally put in any sort of land drains, I found out the hard way, a farmer asked me to drain a field, the Police des eaux et rivier summonsed me and I was liable for a 16k fine for 200€ worth of work. fortunately our Mairie pleaded on my behalf as I was tricked into doing a job that I had no idea was illegal and a lesson was learned

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Posted by Kanak - 3 years ago

hi sunshinedays,

brian61 and Fish24 are both right.   What you haven't said is whether you think the fact that this is tenanted land has any bearing on the issue.  .i.e. whether the tenant has deliberately diverted run-off.  Art 640 holds as long as there has not been any contribtion from the 'hand of man'.  I recently had some work done where the entrepreneur made a big deal of not evacuating run-off towards a neighbour (which is illegal), whereas if you are lower, and therefore downstream, that is natural drainage, about which you can not do a lot. Take some photos and ask if they can adjust their farming practices??

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Posted by Fish24 - 3 years ago

Brian61 is right and the cost would be yours even if the owner agrees to the works (terrain superior and terrain inferior) - Code Civil - Article 640 - so do have a chat with the Mairie but I think rain water would be difficult to capture and divert.

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Posted by brian61 - 3 years ago

This is a complicated subject. It is known that rain or spring water runs downhill until it finds its way into a stream/river. So if this water is running naturally off the land then there is not alot you can do except to divert it around your house but making sure that that you do not divert it onto the next property downhill at a single point (ie outlet pipe rather than spread out over the field).

If however your uphill neighbour has modified the natural lie of the land (or its coming off a roof) and this is causing you problems it is another matter and your neighbour could be responsible for correcting their error.

As a starting point sometimes it is best to get someone from the town hall around and to discuss it.