Depending on the scenario, the answer is a little bit different. In all cases, it’s best to refer to your individual insurance policy and discuss the situation with your insurance agent to be sure. Remember to take photos of all damages and save any receipts related to temporary fixes.
If a tree fell onto a house, that homeowner’s insurance needs to handle it, no matter whose property the tree fell from, according to Bob Hartwig, insurance expert, economist and consultant for University of South Carolina. Debris removal is often included in services covered by insurance in this case, he said.
For example, if your neighbor’s tree fell onto your house, call your own insurance company; that’s not on your neighbor.
If a tree falls onto someone’s property or multiple people’s properties and does not damage a house, each homeowner is responsible for clearing his or her own lot, Hartwig said. If that tree damaged landscaping, fencing or unattached structures chances are those aren’t covered by homeowners insurance, he said.
If a tree falls into a public roadway from private property, local authorities will more than likely take care of that, Hartwig said. Any debris that ends up on private property as a result of that is the responsibility of that homeowner.