If a giant tree limb fell off a tree on campus property and destroyed my daughter’s computer, is the school liable to fix it?

We were sitting in a public area at the university over the weekend and 50 feet above us a giant tree limb fell off and the tree crashed down on the tables and destroyed my daughter’s laptops. My family barely escaped injury but the laptop left on the table was destroyed. We filed a police report with campus police and have pictures. Is the school liable for the damages?

Asked on October 31, 2011 under Business Law, Florida


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Good question. Ordinarily the school would not be liable for any damages caused by vegetation breaking on its grounds. However an exception arises where if the school's employees know or should have known about a dangerous condition on its grounds fails to warn or rectify the condition, and damages result, the school could be liable for the damages.

I would make an insurance claim with the school for the fair market value of the damaged laptop and see what the school does. Possibly the school has access to vendors where it can assist in getting a replacement laptop for your daughter.

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