If a neighbor’s healthy tree is blown into my yard during a storm, who is responsible for cleaning up the tree?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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If a neighbor’s healthy tree is blown into my yard during a storm, who is responsible for cleaning up the tree?

We had a major storm which downed nearly a dozen healthy trees on our 13 acres of property,; 2 of the trees were blown across the street into 2 of our neighbors’ yards. The neighbors were very rude and insistent on us removing the trees before we barely had a chance to get help. We were told by friends that the law in Tennessee states that if it is an act of God then the owners of the fallen/blown trees are not responsible. Does that mean as long as the trees were healthy? Does that law only take damage into consideration or is it clean up as well?

Thank You

Asked on April 4, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Tennessee


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Since the trees were healthy and an "act of god" was the reason that they came down, then you bear no responsibiltiy for any damage caused and/or the clean up. Your neighbor will have to bear the costs. Actually, they may be able to make a claim on their homeowner's insurance policy. If, however, these trees were in fact dead or dying and you knew/should have known of this condition, then you would bear the liability for any resulting damages.

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