If a tree branch falls on your parked car, should the property owner's insurance cover the damage?

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Aug 6, 2018

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Insurance Question from Edgemont, NY

Asked on 08/06/2018

If a tree branch falls on your parked car, should the property owner's insurance cover the damage? See above.

Answer given on August 10, 2018

If a tree branch falls on your car and the tree is from another person’s property, it is possible their insurance will cover it.  The other person can contact their homeowner insurance company and ask that it be paid under “property damage to others”. There is usually a limit of $500 or $1,000 for this homeowner coverage, and they do not have to be legally responsible for the damage. They would have no deductible, and this usually does not affect their claim status.   Another way is if you had advised the owner of the danger of the tree and its likelihood of causing damage.  If you can prove you had done this prior to the tree branch falling, then they could be held legally responsible for the damage to your car.

If neither of these events can or will happen, you would have to file a claim under your auto insurance, under the comprehensive portion of the policy.  The deductible is usually lower for this insurance coverage and your auto insurance rates should not be affected.  Hopefully you have this coverage under your automobile policy.

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