As we all clean up after Hurricane Matthew the most common question we are getting from tenants and owners is regarding fallen trees. We thought we would clear up a common and often confused question regarding “whose is responsible for the tree?”
The short answer is whosoever yard the tree is in, is responsible. In most cases.
Some people may have a “debris removal” endorsement in your insurance policy and you should contact your insurance company right away. They will instruct you on who will be cleaning up the mess or reimbursement for the damage. The second major exception would be negligence but for our purposes we are discussing post hurricane clean up and most likely negligence would not be involved.
If property damage is involved, whoever suffers the damage should call their insurance company for direction and coverage. Again, whoever suffers the damage should call, NOT whose tree it was.
To be a good neighbor though, its usually in everyone’s best interest to do their part and talk to your neighbors and work the problem together.Remember before you do any tree removal make sure the scene is safe and free of power lines and its usually best to hire a professional tree service.