During a storm a neighbor’s tree fell on my son’s car, which property owner is responsible?

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During a storm a neighbor’s tree fell on my son’s car, which property owner is responsible?

My son only has liability insurance on the car.

Asked on March 1, 2017 under Real Estate Law, Tennessee

Answers:

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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

It depends. Was the tree healthy? If it was dead or dying and your neighbor knew or should have known of the condition, then they were negligent for not cutting it down the tree, so they would be responsible for any damage caused by its falling. If, however, the tree was otherwise healthy an an "act of god" was the reason that it came down (e.g. due to a storm), then they bear no responsibility for the damage. Your son will have to bear the costs if your homeowner's insurance doesn't cover the claim.


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