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Due diligence is key to insurance claims

Due diligence is key to insurance claims

About a year ago we pruned a large Siberian elm that was close to a customer’s home. The tree was hanging part over their house, part over their deck, and part over their neighbour’s house. While Siberian elms aren’t prized trees, this was a mature one and added to the look and appeal of the property. Understandably, the customer wanted to keep the tree and decided to get it pruned as to not incur tree damage to their property. The focus of pruning was to hone in on hazardous branches, particularly those that were dead and dying.

Effectiveness of pruning

Pruning all the branches away from the houses/deck would essentially mean cutting the entire tree down, so in order to keep the tree we had to maintain some branches that were overtop of structures.  Take a look as to why to prune a tree to get a better understanding.

Trees Saving Money

Well, not even 6 months later, a branch failed and landed on the customer’s roof; causing some damage (did we mention this was a flat roof?).

Call An Arborist

This is a rare situation but it does happen. An arborist can come in, give an assessment as well as complete the work, and still 6 months later a problem arises with the tree. Trees carry inherent risks, this is not to say that a tree should be cut down, or tree damage will occur, but because it carriers a risk, it does call for risk management and due diligence.

To continue on with the story, the customer immediately contacted insurance to let them know what happened. The first thing insurance wanted to know was whether or not the customer was taking care of their tree, or in other words, whether or not the customer was doing their due diligence.

The customer replied yes. The insurance company asked for proof. The customer forwarded an emailed copy of the receipt they were issued from us a few months prior.

Final Thoughts

Insurance had little to do but comply with covering the cost for damages because the customer had done their due diligence.  Being proactive pays off rather than reactive as to avoid any related tree damage.  Consider looking at the reasons for tree branch failure can impact you and your property and how to protect yourself from it as well.