There are plenty of legitimate tree removal companies, but there are also some less-than-respectable outfits that will be roaming New Jersey neighborhoods, looking for some business. But let’s say your neighbor’s tree has been a concern of yours over time. Q. What if my tree falls on my neighbours’ property? Look further into who owns the tree and what your homeowners' insurance will cover. The same rules apply above in that most carriers will not cover the debris removal of a tree that does not cause damage to a covered structure. For example, if a healthy oak tree on your property fell through your neighbor’s roof due to Hurricane Irma’s winds, you are not liable for those repairs. Whether it started on your property or not. While the law states that the fallen tree in your yard, whether it is yours or not, is your responsibility to remove, your neighbor may be willing to help out. The neighbor insists that we have to pay for their damage. Your tree falls on your neighbor’s property causing no damage. If the tree is on the property line, both property owners share the value of the tree and are responsible for upkeep on their side of the boundary line. All rights reserved (About Us). Or you can call the Board of Tree Experts at (732) 833-0325. If your neighbor’s tree falls during a storm and damages your house, you should still be covered by your homeowners insurance policy. The same rules apply above in that most carriers will not cover the debris removal of a tree that does not cause damage to a covered structure. © 2020 Advance Local Media LLC. Homeowners insurance is like anything other purchase. Please support local journalism. A large tree limb fell during a storm from my healthy, maintained maple tree and damaged both my own fence and a neighbor's fence. Can My Neighbor Come on My Yard? Heavy winds and even tornadoes did a job on trees, which fell across roads and onto homes and cars throughout the state. You can't march into your neighbor's yard and cut down a tree that isn't yours. Please subscribe today to NJ.com. By Jedediah Mannis. You can also trim parts of your neighbor's tree that may hang over your property line. If leaves, acorns, twigs or other debris from a neighbor’s tree falls onto your property, you are responsible for cleaning this debris up. “If the neighbor’s tree falls on your house, it’s your problem,” says Gary Blackwell, an independent insurance agent based in Corinth, Maine. Patel, Patel (the neighbor) hired a contractor to remove the roots from the large Monterey pine his neighbor (Booska) owned. If your tree falls onto a neighbor's property, it might not make a sound, but you may be liable. Look for someone with a license from the Department of Environmental Protection’s Board of Tree Experts. In most states, if your tree or any part of it falls on your neighbors’ property and causes damage to their property through no fault of your own (due to a snow storm, winds, hurricane, or another so-called “act of God”), you are not responsible. You might be desperate to remove a tree, but don’t rush it. Their Property, Their Homeowners Policy. Trees can be tricky, but for the most part homeowners are responsible for what falls into their own yard. The Insurance Institute said standard homeowners insurance policies cover damage to trees and shrubs from weather issues. But there are ways. Only a few feet of this tree landed on your property. First, it’s usually best to discuss the potential issue with your neighbor. Otherwise, anyone could come on to your property and cut down trees that they didn't like. This situation actually happens quite often. There are two ways the situation could go after that. “In most cases, an insurance company is not going to spend time trying to figure out where a tree or branches originally came from.”. If your property was damaged by a tree, in most cases, your own homeowners insurance will cover the damage, no matter who owned the tree that fell, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). However, solution are not always easy, cheap, or friendly. The Board says those with licenses demonstrate they meet the experience and educational qualifications for the license, including continuing education requirements. It is usually the responsibility of the homeowner whose property was damaged to file a claim with their insurance company for the necessary repairs, said Claudia Mott, a certified financial planner with Epona Financial Solutions in Basking Ridge. Who Is Responsible for Fallen Tree Damage? Finally, if the cause of the damage to your property is the fault of a neighbor, for example, if a neighbors tree fell on your property or home, your insurance company may make you pay the deductible at first but may try and get the deductible back from your neighbor to reimburse you. The insurance company is usually responsible for taking care of the damages. A. In the wake of Tropical Storm Isaias, homeowners across the state are contending with a big mess. You may not go onto the neighbor's property or destroy the tree. If your neighbor’s tree has fallen on your property, it is you who is responsible for the damage incurred. If the neighbor took reasonable care of the tree … Your property is your responsibility, so it’s best to inspect your trees every year for signs of disease or damage. Talking with your neighbors is always the best place to start. Learn more about this in the section on subrogation below. If your tree or a portion of your tree falls on your neighbor’s property and the tree has obvious signs of disease or rot, or if your neighbor had filed a complaint with the town or with you about the hazard, you may be liable for any damage caused. Second, your neighbor could be held liable for damages, according to FindLaw.Third, if your neighbor doesn’t do anything about it, the tree could be considered a nuisance, and you could file a nuisance claim, FindLaw says. ... You must show that the tree caused some damage to you, whether to your person or to your property. Patel claimed the roots had started to damage concrete around his property. The most common is "bundling," which means you have your at least your home and auto with the same provider, and perhaps an umbrella policy as well, she said. Your tree falls on your neighbor’s property causing no damage. 6 months ago part of this tree fell, causing … Your credit score also impacts insurance premium calculations, Mott said. Additional Damages and Criminal Penalties for It is important to take pictures before the tree is removed, in order to document it for your insurance company. A Neighbor's Tree Damaged My Property By John Stevens Consult with an attorney before attempting to file a lawsuit on your own. Karin Price Mueller writes the Bamboozled column for NJ Advance Media and is the founder of NJMoneyHelp.com. Lastly, don't hesitate to shop around. The Town came and cut down half the tree to clear out the road. When Neighbor’s Tree Looks Like it Could Fall Into Your Yard. My Neighbor’s Tree Roots Damaged My Driveway When wayward roots threaten people’s properties, it can be hard to spur the owner to action. If the tree was left in a state of decay and that condition caused its fall, then your neighbor is liable to you for the cost of repairing the damage to your house and for the removal of the tree from your property coupled with the damage to your garden, grass, etc. I've had five foot branches fall off my health tree into my neighbor's yard due to bad weather. If the tree trunk is on the property line, you are both equally the owner of the tree. You can also see if there are complaints against the company with the Division of Consumer Affairs at (973) 504-6370. My neighbor's tree looks like it's going to fall on my house any day now. Your insurance is not liable. If your neighbor’s tree is dead or damaged and you had made the neighbor aware of the condition of the tree prior to the storm by way of certified letter, it is possible that the neighbor would be liable for damages if his tree fell on your home. If you do harm the tree, you could be found liable for up to three times the value of the tree. Each insurance company also offers discounts that may help reduce the level of your premium, she said. Courts give great deference to private property lines in the U.S. Each case has its own nuances. Tropical Storm Isaias knocks a large tree branch down on a vehicle parked on Patton Drive in East Brunswick. If your insurer wins, you might even get back your deductible. What happens if a tree fell in my yard? When police officer came and blocked out road my neighbor told police officer it was my tree but it was clear it was on the border on his property and a quarter on mine. Learn more about this in the section on subrogation below. Patel, Patel (the neighbor) hired a contractor to remove the roots from the large Monterey pine his neighbor (Booska) owned. You can trim back branches to your property line, but that may not solve the problem if you're worried about the whole tree coming down. However, if you can prove your neighbor was negligent in caring for the dead or dying tree, it could easily become their insurance company’s problem. My deductible would be more than it would cost to cut the tree up and fix the fence. A large tree limb fell during a storm from my healthy, maintained maple tree and damaged both my own fence and a neighbor's fence. The short answer is no. Follow NJMoneyHelp on Twitter @NJMoneyHelp. Please support local journalism. That's right, even if the tree is rooted in your neighbor's yard, if it crashes onto your property, it's your problem. It becomes their tree. "In general, the age, size, replacement cost of your home, credit score and type of construction are all going to factor into the calculation," she said. "Additionally, the number of people living in the home, where it is located, whether there are pets and the existence of an alarm system can all be inputs as well.". 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