Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.
can you respond?
Hello Jo many thanks
Was this tree diseased or damaged that you can see?
No but we have been asking him to allow us to crown the tree as it had not been crowned for decades, althuogh he did allow us to trim some overhanging branches a few years ago.
Would that failure have weakened it?
Also, were there trees being blown down all over the place in this area?
I do not know
Whether there were other trees blown down?
only one other down the road , but there is a bank of trees all backing onto the back gardens of our houses
Are you asking if he is liable for your damage?
yes and also who has the right to the logs - the lawn is damaged and the longer the tree sits there the more damage to the lawn
If the tree was upon his land then he has the right to the logs unless he is literally refusing to collect them in which case you could argue that they are abandoned.
In terms of whether he is liable for damage, the short answer is that he probably is but its not that simple.
He will be saying that he is not liable because this was an Act of God.
Obviously the high winds were an act of God.
The question is whether the high winds were solely responsible.
Or if it was a combination of them and the fact that the tree was diseased or otherwise badly maintained.
If there were trees blowing down all over the place then he might succeed.
If this tree was the only one then your position is strengthened.
Given that there has been previous correspondence upon the crowning issue though I suspect a court would probably find it was badly maintained.
so what course do you suggest to remedy the situation ?
What is the sum of your loss?
Well in reality only the gardeners cost , but as we will be renting the house out for holiday lets this summer we need the garden looking good !
You can remove the tree yourself and sue him for the cost. If you are under time pressure then that probably is the way forward here. It will be Small Claims Court sum so cheap enough to issue against him. T
You do need to give him reasonable notice of your intention to do that though. I would suggest writing to him giving him 7 days to put this right. Make clear that in defaults you will do the work and sue him for the cost. He won't be very happy about it but it will get the work done.
Thanks you have been very helpful, so to summarize :
He is liable to remove the tree ( within a fair timescale say one month ?) and if he doesn't we can remove it ourselves and sue him through the small claims court for cost of removal and gardening costs
Yes, basically. He could try defending that on the basis that it was an act of God but I think you would probably win t
No problem and all the best.
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