What to do if my neighbor was helping me cut down a tree and caused damage to my house?

He suggested that a friend of his, who “has a crane and is licensed”, come out and top the tree to make things easier for us. I was interested, so my neighbor called his friend; apparently he had already looked at the tree and asked “how much would you charge me to top that tree?” I agreed to an estimate of $100-$150 in cash. They then returned the next day and dropped a large branch from the tree onto my house. the friend did not use a crane and is not insured. On top of that, They tried to cover up the damages by screwing things back together with drywall screws an tried to lie about it happening. I ask the friend how it happened and he replied, “I didn’t see it happen”. I pointed out the damage to the roof, gutters, siding, and landscape he replied,”Oh, that must have been that 1 limb”. At the moment, the tree is still standing, my house is damaged and my neighbor has my $150.

Asked on September 23, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Wisconsin


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You have the following options concerning the damage to your home caused by your neighbor and your friend:

1. make a claim with your homeowner's insurance policy for the damage to your home assuming you have a policy in place after you get an estimate for repairs;

2. make a request to your neighbor and his friend for the costs of repairing your home and if they refuse, consult with an attorney as to your legal options;

3. pay for the repairs yourself.

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