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The storm may have passed, but who is going to pay for the damage?

By Matthew Shapiro

 

 

mattThe greater Daytona Beach area is a beautiful place to live and that is in large part due to its numerous trees.  Although a large number of individuals were fortunate enough not to have sustained extreme property damage due to Hurricane Matthew, many homeowners are currently dealing with fallen trees that have harmed their homes or are littering their lawns.  Tree removal can be expensive as can repairs to a roof.  Many homeowners have called our office following the storm to ask, who is financially responsible when it comes to fallen trees?
 
If a tree is rooted on your property and falls on your own home then you are financially responsible.  A quick call to your insurance company is the recommended course of action.  With that being said, if a tree falls on your property but it was rooted in your neighbor’s yard then the health of the tree comes into question.  Individuals are not liable when a healthy tree falls due to a storm.  The damage is what the legal profession calls “an act of God” which was not the result of negligence.  However, if the tree was dead and the homeowner knew it was a fall risk then liability exists based on their failure to trim the tree or remove it.  In that instance damages can be recovered.  Similarly, if a neighbor fails to remove a fallen tree properly and their negligence causes damage to your home then a lawsuit could be instituted if payment is not made.  This includes seeking the recovery of a deductible.
 
If you have experienced damage to your property due to Hurricane Matthew and would like to receive further information as to your rights, please contact Rice and Rose Law Firm at 386-257-1222 or visit our website at RiceRoseLaw.com.

Posted October 11, 2016 

 

 

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