Non-Compliant Neighbours / Owners And What To Do About The Problem.

If your neighbour’s land is within your fuel management fire zone, the neighbour is then responsible for its fuel management procedure under the requirement by law.

If you know the owner of the land, discuss the situation with the neighbour and ensure he complies with the safety standards of removing trees or other vegetation posing a fire hazard threat.

If the neighbouring owner can’t be found or contacted refer the case to the Junta da Freguesia or alert the competent authorities; GNR and Câmara. You can also phone 808 200 520 or go to the website http://www.gnr.pt/ambiente.aspx to report the situation.

You could also enlist the help of a lawyer who can check the “cadastral” or map of your local area made for taxation purposes.

How to Make a Complaint

The GNR is responsible for the “Legal process” that is, initiating fines in situations of non-compliance with land cleaning and fire safety rules.

If you wish to report non-compliant neighbouring land to the GNR, please follow the procedure below.

  1. Your full name, (or names if joint property owners), address of your property including post code, your Portuguese residency number, fiscal number (N.I.F.) and phone or email contact details.
  2. State that your concern regarding your neighbour’s land breach of the fuel management laws – Decree-Law no. 124/2006, of June 28, as amended by Decree-Law no. 17/2009, of January 14 and Decree-Law No. 10/2018 of 14 February.
  3. Provide the location and address of the offending property, with a description of the problem. If known, state the type of trees or bushes involved.
  4. GPS coordinates and a satellite image from Google Earth, indicating the offending property.
  5. Photos with dates of the current state of the property, if possible. 
  6. Keep records of your complaints.

Please refer your complains in Portuguese, preferable – if not ask a friend or advisor to help.

What happens next

Once your complaint has been filed with the GNR, they must verify that the reported land is in breach of fuel management laws. If confirmed, the Câmara Municipal has a maximum of five (5) days to notify the owners or responsible entities and give them a deadline to clean the land.

If the owners are unknown or cannot be located, and or the deadline has surpassed with no action being taken by the known owner, the Câmara Municipal will take responsibility by means of hiring contractors. Any known owner who fails to comply with the act will be fined, will be liable for the cost.