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What Should You Do if Your Neighbor’s Tree Falls on Your House?

If your neighbor’s tree falls on your house, you’ll have a big mess to clean up. More importantly, you may have thousands of dollars worth of damage to your property. A property damage lawyer in Hollywood can deal with the home insurance company on your behalf and help you get the money you deserve.

There Are Certain Steps You Need to Take When a Tree Falls on Your House

As with any other type of accident, there are certain steps you need to take immediately after the event to protect your rights. If you follow these steps, not only will your family be safe, but you will also protect yourself legally.

If you don’t follow these steps, you may find out that the insurance company refuses to pay your claim. Or you may end up receiving partial payment. If, at any point throughout the process you have questions, contact a Hollywood property damage lawyer immediately.

Make Sure You Evacuate Your Family and Pets from Inside the Home

The first thing you need to do, regardless of how bad the damage is to your home, is get your family out of the house. You need to make sure that you, your spouse, and all of your children move to the exterior of your home.

If you have any pets, it is highly suggested you remove them from the home as well. In the early hours, you have no idea how long you will be away from your home.

Our property damage lawyers in Hollywood have handled cases where families were not allowed to return home for weeks or even months.

Call 911 Immediately

The next thing you need to do is call 911. It may seem like you’re overreacting to what has happened. However, you have no idea if the tree has hit power lines or caused any electrical issues in your home.

911 can arrange to contact emergency services to come out and assess the situation. They can also make recommendations as to how to go about fixing the damage to your home.

When the emergency services department leaves, make sure you arrange to get a copy of their full report.

Arrange to Have the Gas and Electric Turned Off if Need Be

When the emergency services team is at your home, ask if they can arrange to have the gas and electricity turned off. Unless they confirm that this is not necessary, you want to take all steps to mitigate further damage.

If the insurance company believes you could have prevented some of the damage from taking place, they may deny or shortchange your claim. If this happens, make sure you let your property damage lawyer in Hollywood know.

Make Sure You Document Everything for Your Property Damage Lawyer in Hollywood

As hectic as things will be, you do not want to lose sight of the big picture. You must take an account of the damage caused to your home. Document everything you see and try to take pictures of all damage.

If your homeowner’s insurance claim happens to be denied, your property damage lawyer in Hollywood will need this documentation. This documentation will also be necessary if you have to pursue a claim against your neighbor or their insurance policy.

a property damage lawyer in Hollywood helping a home owner

Take Pictures and a Video of the Damage – Inside and Out

Since everyone has cell phones these days, there’s no excuse for not taking a video of the damage to your home. Our Hollywood property damage lawyers suggest that you do a full sweep, inside and out.

You have no idea what can happen in the hours after the tree falls on your house. If the damage gets worse, make sure that you take updated pictures and videos. Make sure to ask the emergency services technicians to do the same thing.

Try to Make a List of Damaged Property Including Personal Property

As with any other insurance issue, you want to make sure you have a list of all damage to your property. This includes damage to both the structure itself and your personal property.

For example, if you have a $45,000 motorcycle parked under the tree, it may sustain serious damage. Depending on the terms of your insurance policy, the damage to your vehicles may or may not be covered. The best way to know for sure is to talk to a property damage lawyer in Hollywood right away.

Your Hollywood Property Damage Lawyer Needs to Know What Caused the Tree to Fall

One of the first things your attorney will ask you is what caused the tree to fall. If the tree is exclusively on your neighbor’s property, they should be responsible for maintaining the tree.

Furthermore, if you know for certain that somebody was working on the tree at any point before the accident, let your attorney know. The goal is to make sure that you do not have to pay anything out of pocket for damage caused by a third party.

Did Your Neighbor Fail to Maintain the Tree?

If you believe that your neighbors failed to properly maintain the tree, let your attorney know. If you’re like some homeowners, you may have already commented on the state of the tree to friends and family.

If you have any notes, text messages, or emails about the state of the tree before the event, make copies of them. Your property damage lawyer in Hollywood will need all the information you have to help prove your claim.

Was It Caused by an Act of God?

It is important to note that your neighbor may not be held responsible if the fallen tree was due to an Act of God. For example, if there was a tropical storm or hurricane and it caused the tree to fall, you may have to go through your own insurance company.

Rather than have their premiums go up, expect your neighbors to blame the tree falling on an Act of God. They will have talked to their insurance company within an hour of the tree falling. Make sure that you act just as quickly.

Remember to Contact an Experienced Hollywood Property Damage Lawyer

If your neighbor’s tree has fallen on your home and caused significant damage, it’s a good idea to contact our office. Depending on the severity of the damage, you may need to file a claim with your homeowners’ insurance company. Our property damage lawyers in Hollywood, FL will make sure your claim is handled properly from the start.

We understand how frantic things can become when your home suffers this kind of damage. It is not as if you can predict this sort of thing happening to your family. The good news is that your Hollywood property damage attorney can deal with the insurance company on your behalf.

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