Do You Need a Permit to Cut Down a Tree in FL?

Do I need a permit to cut down a tree in FL? You may be wondering what the process entails and what permitting is required for tree removal on your property. 

There are state regulations on tree removal, which include protections of certain species. Even cutting down a tree on your property could incur penalties, including hefty fines.

Fortunately, there are a few guidelines you can follow to help know what is allowed, no matter where you live in the state. Keep reading to find out more.

Why Are There Regulations on Tree Removal?

The reasoning behind removal regulations is that trees are an important part of the ecosystem. They help filter the air and reduce temperatures during the summer. Trees also help protect against soil erosion and are homes for a whole host of birds, insects, and other animals.

This is part of the general philosophy that everyone benefits from trees, regardless of where they are and who owns the property they sit on.

Private Property

Until recently, county and local ordinances made determinations about who could cut down a tree, even on private property. But, in 2019, the state legislature passed a law that bans local governments from regulating tree removal on private property.

This also means that you can trim, prune, or move almost any tree on your property. The law also did away with certain local ordinances that required residents to replant a new tree when removing another.

Exceptions to the Rule

While the private property provision is a general rule of thumb, there are exceptions you should be aware of. For instance, Florida statutes specifically protect mangrove trees. That is because these trees, which grow near water, help protect shorelines.

There are even regulations on trimming mangroves, but it depends on their size. In general, if they are between six and 10 feet tall, it is okay for you to do it yourself. Outside this range, trimming is either prohibited or you must request a special FL tree cutting permit.

Another exception is not about specific types of trees but rather the area in which they exist. A canopy road protection zone is an area where the majority of the overhead canopy is from native trees. If your property borders one of these roads, trees on your land may be protected from removal. 

Hire a Professional to Cut Down a Tree

Florida does not require licensing for tree removal. This means anyone can cut down a tree on their property, as long as it is not protected by other regulations.

Note that tree removal is a very precise process that can be dangerous if not handled properly. Besides hurting someone, a large tree can land on buildings or vehicles and cause serious damage.

Find a Tree Removal Service Near You

Now that you have an idea of what regulations dictate whether you can cut down a tree, you can determine the best course of action. Find a reputable tree service that is aware of all regulations regarding removal, so you can have the peace of mind that you are in compliance with the law. 

At Pro Tree Service, we have more than 20 years of experience in the tree removal industry. We use state-of-the-art equipment to provide fast, safe removal at competitive rates. Reach out to us today for a free quote.

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Pro Tree Service prides itself on providing Tallahassee and its surrounding areas with the highest quality tree care. Continuing to educate ourselves in all areas of Arboriculture & safety practices sets us apart. We strive to set the standard in Tallahassee for reliable, and professional tree services.

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Tallahassee, FL 32303

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