Zephyrhills, FL (Law Firm Newswire) June 17, 2011 – Hurricane season is quickly approaching, so homeowners need to be aware of property concerns. Even if an owner’s property is not subject to flooding, winds can do damage. Many people have trees on their property, and in the eyes of legal and insurance experts, trees can be a huge liability. Some properties have withstood heavy rains and winds for decades only to sustain serious damage due to falling branches or trees.
In the eyes of the law, a property owner must maintain his or her premises in a safe, hazard-free way. Getting a qualified and insured arborist or landscape professional to assess a property’s trees annually for concerns can go a long way to reduce harm and loss. Otherwise, other individuals can go after homeowners for negligence and premise liability issues.
“Every property owner is responsible for monitoring and caring for their trees,” said Zephyrhills serious injury attorney Robert Alston. “Tree trimming can be expensive, but is far less expensive than if a lawsuit were to happen because you were negligent.”
Courts have deemed that property owners have the duty to inspect, maintain, and correct hazardous tree conditions that pose a serious injury to another person, property, vehicle, and animals. If an individual has a vacation property that someone else maintains while they are away, this duty to inspect and correct potentially risky trees could be the responsibility of the caretaker.
Sometimes it is not feasible to completely remove a tree that poses a risk, but owners should be aware of trees that have the following issues:
• Areas of rot or decay
• Fungi, mushrooms, or growths at the base or tree trunk
• Big holes, cracks or fissures in the tree trunk
• Broken branches or collapsing limbs
• Obstructing critical lines of sight
• Presence of animals or insects in abnormal areas or quantities
“Call a tree professional if you have any of these issues as a tree can injure and even kill someone,” Alston said. “Just as you keep up your home and car, you must properly take care of the trees on your premises.”
Zephyrhills serious injury lawyer Robert Alston has more than a decade of legal expertise in serious injury cases. At Alston & Baker, P.A., he will take the time to go over the complexity of legal and insurance issues with a client and help ensure their right to compensation and medical care.
Alston & Baker, PA
5518 Seventh Street
Zephyrhills, Florida 33542