Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 55.1. Property and Conveyances
Chapter 28. Trespasses; Fences
2/21/2024

Article 5. No-Fence Law.

§ 55.1-2814. How governing body of county may make local fence law.

The board of supervisors or other governing body in any county, after publishing notice as required by subsection F of § 15.2-1427, may, by ordinance, declare the boundary line of each lot or tract of land or any stream in such county, any magisterial district of such county, or any selected portion of such county, to be a lawful fence as to any or all domesticated livestock, or may declare any other kind of fence for such county, magisterial district, or selected portion of the county than as prescribed by § 55.1-2804 to be a lawful fence, as to any or all of such animals.

Code 1950, § 8-880; 1977, c. 624, § 55-310; 2019, c. 712.

§ 55.1-2815. Effect of such law on certain fences.

A declaration made by ordinance adopted pursuant to § 55.1-2814 shall not apply to relieve the adjoining landowners from making and maintaining their division fences, as defined by § 55.1-2804; however, Article 6 (§ 55.1-2821 et seq.) shall apply to such division fences.

Code 1950, § 8-881; 1977, c. 624, § 55-311; 2019, c. 712.

§ 55.1-2816. Application to railroad companies.

No action taken under the provisions of § 55.1-2814 shall relieve any railroad company of any duty or obligation imposed on every such company by § 56-429, or imposed by any other statute now in force, in reference to fencing their lines of railway and rights-of-way.

Code 1950, § 8-882; 1977, c. 624, § 55-312; 2019, c. 712.

§ 55.1-2817. No authority to adopt more stringent fence laws.

Nothing in § 55.1-2814 shall authorize or require the boards of supervisors or other governing bodies of counties to declare a more stringent fence as a lawful fence for any county, magisterial district, or selected portion of any county than as prescribed by § 55.1-2804.

Code 1950, § 8-883; 1977, c. 624, § 55-313; 2019, c. 712.

§ 55.1-2818. Effect on existing fence laws or no-fence laws.

Nothing in § 55.1-2814 shall repeal the existing fence laws in any county, magisterial district, or selected portion of any county, until changed by the board of supervisors or other governing body, by ordinance and in accordance with the provisions thereof, nor shall the provisions of § 55.1-2814 apply to any county, magisterial district, or selected portion of any county in which the no-fence law is now in force, if such no-fence law exists otherwise than in an ordinance adopted by the board of supervisors or other governing body of such county entered pursuant to § 55.1-2814.

Code 1950, § 8-884; 1977, c. 624, § 55-314; 2019, c. 712.

§ 55.1-2819. Lands under quarantine.

The boundary line of each lot or tract of land in any county in the Commonwealth that is under quarantine shall be a lawful fence as to any and all domesticated livestock.

Code 1950, § 8-885; 1977, c. 624, § 55-315; 2019, c. 712.

§ 55.1-2820. When unlawful for animals to run at large.

It is unlawful for the owner or manager of any domesticated livestock to permit any such animal, as to which the boundaries of lots or tracts of land have been or may be constituted a lawful fence, to run at large beyond the limits of his own lands within the county, magisterial district, or portion of such county in which such boundaries have been constituted and are a lawful fence.

Code 1950, § 8-886; 1977, c. 624, § 55-316; 1979, c. 486; 2019, c. 712.