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Tree removal company dropped a tree on my deck.

alchemyofmind

alchemyofmind

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I hired a local removal company to take down 3 dead trees in my yard. The second tree they dropped onto my deck. Guy didn't know I was home, and I was actually recording it to show my kids how trees are taken down (they were out with dad).

My questions are: do I take it to his insurance?

Do I hire a contractor to assess the damage and structural integrity?

Do I file with my homeowner's insurance, and they go after them?

We've asked him for his insurance information and he's refusing to give it to us. I'm a nurse practitioner and I deal with my own levels of malpractice insurance, so I don't understand why he's hesitant. If I made a mistake, my patients would be wanting my details, also.

And lastly, of the videos I've linked to my Dropbox, did he do the take down properly?



I hope posting those links are okay.

Opinions needed!
Thanks in advance!
 

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Del_

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Looks like minor damage and nothing structural.

I would tell him that you would like to hire your own contractor and you do need his insurance information(he probably doesn't have any), or it is small claims court time.

I don't think those guys know what they are doing. Not enough pull. Feller cut through hinge.
 
NIP Group
alchemyofmind

alchemyofmind

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Did you asked if he had insurance? Was he the low bid? Looks as if it did not snap lower railing, or do deck damage. I would let him repair it at his expense.
We did ask, yeah. There's damage to the lower railing; I didn't take a closer picture. He was the medium bid.
 
sundance

sundance

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And lastly, of the videos I've linked to my Dropbox, did he do the take down properly?
Easy to answer....NO he didn't if he landed on the deck.
Unfortunate guess would be he doesn't have insurance if he's refusing to share the info. If you know he has the insurance I'd be talking to them. Failing that I'd at least talk to my homeowners agent about options.
Personally at this juncture I'd want no part of him having his buddy take care of it. Get an honest contractor, be honest about what was damaged / needs repaired (more pictures are always good). With the evidence you have he has no chance of beating it with his insurance agent or in small claims court if it comes to that.
 
noodlewalker

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It doesn't appear that there is any structural damage there, however getting professional eyes on it is definitely good advice.
This is a legitimate tree company?? I don't know, but three guys in shorts pulling on a rope just screams amateur with a chainsaw to me. That looks like something me and my brother might try to pull off on a weekend at dads farm... Not something worthy of medium bid.
Show that video to your homeowner's insurance agent and give them that guy's name and number, let them sort it out... Certainly don't pay his bid regardless... Good luck with it and keep us posted
 
CacaoBoy

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Regardless of whether there is damage to the supporting structure of the deck, there will be building code requirements for the railing and repairs must be done to code. In some places the local building department would want to be notified of such damage and might send an inspector. It would be worth a phone call to the building departement, and that could be a step in the direction of ensuring that repairs were properly performed.
I should add - he's offered to take care of the damage by "having his buddy" come take care of it, but at this point, there's zero trust.
Before even considering this, ask for the buddy's contractor license number. You do not want repairs done by an unlicensed person.

Does this tree work require a license in your area? If so, the licensing board may help to identify his insurance company. If you can get a proper repair without involving your own insurance company it might help you to avoid risking a bump up on your premium.

And, yes, please keep us informed.
 
KarlD

KarlD

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He didn’t do it properly; as a climber I say that the tree should have been climbed and dismantled (condition allowing).

I would tell him your intentions to do the following:-
1. Secure three quotes from approved contractors to effect repairs
2. Choose your preferred contractor
3. Ask him to meet the full cost of your preferred contractor in advance
...and if he doesn’t like it, start speaking to your insurance company
 
alchemyofmind

alchemyofmind

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So we've got insurance information!

And you've all been incredibly helpful, so thank you!

I'm working on a plan to get contractors out; the first one comes Wednesday. Thank you for the advice on the building code! I didn't even take that into consideration, so I'm really happy I came here for your advice.
 
EchoRomeoCharlie

EchoRomeoCharlie

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And THAT ladies and gentleman is why you clean up your dutchmans.

If he won't play ball with his insurance company like he should, odds are he doesn't have any. Talk to your insurance company to determine next steps. Take dude to small claims court for damages.
 
alchemyofmind

alchemyofmind

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He didn’t do it properly; as a climber I say that the tree should have been climbed and dismantled (condition allowing).

I would tell him your intentions to do the following:-
1. Secure three quotes from approved contractors to effect repairs
2. Choose your preferred contractor
3. Ask him to meet the full cost of your preferred contractor in advance
...and if he doesn’t like it, start speaking to your insurance company
The tree had rot and was hollowed toward the root; I believe that's why it wasn't climbed. The other 3 trees were dismantled as I've always watched by neighbors and the like.

Great advice, thank you.
 
EchoRomeoCharlie

EchoRomeoCharlie

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So we've got insurance information!

And you've all been incredibly helpful, so thank you!

I'm working on a plan to get contractors out; the first one comes Wednesday. Thank you for the advice on the building code! I didn't even take that into consideration, so I'm really happy I came here for your advice.
Have you called and made sure his policy is up to date and covers the type of business he was doing?
 

ATH

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Don’t pay him for the work that he did?
I'd withhold payment until the deck is fixed. Heck, if I did the damage, I'd refuse payment from my client until they were made whole.

I don't know that you "need" his insurance info of he is paying out of pocket...but I'd keep it in case he doesn't.

Good luck. Stuff happens... hopefully it gets cleaned up like it should!
 
arathol

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Does this guy have a license to do contracted arborist work or any sort of business license at all? If he doesn't have insurance he doesn't have a license.
Get more pictures, and not just of the deck. Good close ups of the top of the stump and the bottom of the tree where the cut was made. Your insurance company will probably need them. Don't let this guy come back to clean up or remove any evidence that might be useful in a court case, and if the guy is operating an illegal business it may come to that .
 
Husky Man

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Not only do you want to withhold payment until the deck is Inspected and Repaired, you also want a Signed Statement proving that whoever repairs the deck, are Paid before you pay him


Doug :cheers:
 
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