Here in the mid-Hudson Valley and Catskills region, we can reasonably expect a good amount of snow, ice, rain and wind every winter. Sometimes, because of a combination of weather, pre-existing tree conditions and diseases, and just plain bad luck, you could be dealing with a major incident like a tree falling on your house or your car, causing property damage.
This means that instead of calling us for preventative tree maintenance or planned tree removal, you have an emergency situation that needs a speedy solution. Since tree removal services aren’t cheap, a question that often comes up is, “Will my insurance pay for this?” In this article, we’ll go over what situations you may receive reimbursement for tree removal services, and other situations where you may be on your own.
How much snowfall is there in the Hudson Valley and Catskills region?
To set up the prevalence of this problem, let’s take a look at the annual average snowfall totals for our local community (according to Bestplaces.net)
- Kingston, NY – 42 inches of snowfall a year
- Catskill, NY – 44 inches of snowfall a year
- Ellenville, NY – 43 inches of snowfall a year
- Poughkeepsie, NY – 41.5 inches of snowfall a year
- Pine Plains, NY – 52 inches of snowfall a year
Simply put, a regular snow-storm with wind in our region can cause tremendous damage to trees, weighing down limbs and branches as it accumulates or melts, and adding to the already-existing pressures that are on our trees.
How can tree services be paid for by homeowners insurance?
For most homeowners insurance policies, damages caused by a fallen tree can be reimbursed if they meet the following two criteria:
- The tree’s falling was due to a “covered peril” event that is spelled out in your policy. These may include ice, freezing rain, lightning, wind, and other natural weather occurrences. If the tree falls in normal weather conditions, due to rot, age, disease, or other factors, it may not be covered.
- The damage from the falling tree or limbs must be made to a “covered structure” that is named in your policy
On top of the damages that occurred to your property, the next question is, who pays for the tree removal or remediation? Depending on your specific policy, it may often cover the removal of the fallen tree if it is on the aforementioned “covered structure” or if the tree is in the way of your front door or driveway.
Can tree services be paid for by car insurance?
Generally, car insurance can reimburse you for the financial damage that may occur when a falling object like a tree hits on your car. Just like with homeowners insurance, it may not cover you if the tree falls from usual rot and decay; it has to be an unexpected event. However, unlike with homeowners insurance, it unlikely that your car insurance will pay for the removal of the tree after it falls.
Questions? Is your home or car in danger of being damaged in the next storm? Or has the damage already occurred, and you want to know what to do next? Either way, give us a call at 845-331-6782, and we’ll help you figure out what to do.