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What Happens When A Tree Falls On My Yard?

Trees. They provide the oxygen we require to survive. They can provide a picturesque setting. They can even provide a place to hang a swing set. But sometimes they can be a real headache, especially when they come crashing down from your neighbours yard onto your property. When a tree falls on your yard it can be a real drag, and depending on the scenario it might be even worse than you thought.

Here are some questions we would like to address for anyone who is wondering what do I do with this tree on my yard:

What happens when a tree falls from my neighbor’s yard damaging my property?

This may come as a surprise to some, however we would like to make it clear that if your neighbour’s tree falls onto your property and causes damage to your home, your homeowner’s policy will provide coverage for any damages up to your policy limits, after you pay your deductible. In other words, your neighbours home policy and your neighbour will not be effected. Aside from having a new grumpy neighbour that now have to live beside.

If a tree falls from my neighbours yard but does not damage anything, who pays to remove it?

Again, we hate to say it but you will have to clean this one up yourself or pay for a tree removal company to come and clean up the mess. Even if it is just the branches that come from your neighbour’s tree, you are responsible for the clean up. Unless, of course you can negotiate a deal with your neighbour and let them do the work. You think this would be a common courtesy but that is not always the case.

Can I cut down or trim my neighbour’s tree if I think it is dangerous?

If you think the branches of your neighbour’s tree are too close to your home, you can cut them back to the property line, as long as you do not injure the tree. You cannot cut down the tree or enter your neighbour’s land to trim branches without permission.

If my neighbour cuts down a tree on his yard and it damages my property he pays right?

You would think so. But in Ontario what happens is this. Your neighbour the one cutting down the tree would be considered negligent and responsible for the damage. Therefore he would be responsible to pay the actual cash value of the liability claim. However, in Ontario in order to claim the guaranteed replacement cost you need to claim under your own insurance policy for damages to your property. Your insurance company will go against your neighbours insurance company to make up the difference so you get the full replacement cost. However, as soon as this happens it is filed as a liability claim under your own home insurance policy. Did you have a nice claims free discount? Kiss that goodbye thanks to your clumsy neighbour.

What happens if a tree falls on my car?

If a tree falls on your car, the comprehensive coverage of the vehicle owner’s auto policy will apply. Therefore, generally the owner of the tree is not responsible. If your tree falls on your neighbor’s car, your neighbor’s car insurance should pay the claim if your neighbor carries comprehensive coverage. If your neighbor’s tree falls on your car, your comprehensive coverage applies.

Trees. We love them but sometimes they can be a real headache. It is important to know the different scenarios when it comes to how a tree falls and how your insurance coverage can protect you. If you are ever in doubt calling an insurance broker is a good start!

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