Can You File A Lawsuit After Being Struck By A Tree?

With two tree-related deaths reported in NYC in one day, falling victim to accidents like these is far more common than most people realize. Tree incidents can cause serious injuries to the person involved. If this is your case, you are probably wondering if you can file a claim against the party responsible. Before you file, however, knowing what caused the tree to fall in the first place will determine your chances of winning the case. Natural events will occur from time to time, but if you can prove the other party was negligent, you have the right to sue for any damages caused.
Multiple Fractures$4,000,000 Settlement
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A 29 year old woman recovered $4,000,000 when a 25 foot branch broke off an old Elm tree in Stuyvesant Park pinning her to the ground. She suffered multiple fractures and needed several surgeries. The case was taken to trial and the City of NY settled after opening statements for $4 Million.
Traumatic Brain Injury$3,825,000 Settlement
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A 48 year old woman and her family settled down for a picnic under an Elm tree at Wards Island Park in NYC, when a large dead tree branch fell 30 feet landing on her head. The woman was knocked unconscious and suffered Traumatic Brain Injury as well as loss of vision in one eye. During the trial NYC settled the case for $3,825,000
Severe Skull & Brain Injuries$3,875,000 Settlement
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A 48-year-old woman, was severely injured while picnicking on a sunny Memorial Day with her family in Randall's Island Park when a tree limb belonging to a 86' Pine Oak tree suddenly gave way. As a result, the plaintiff was immediately rendered unconscious, bleeding massively from the head and face.

Who Is Responsible For Your Injuries?

If you file a claim, you must determine who is at fault. In many cases, the responsibility falls on the property owner where the tree was located, especially if they knew it already posed a hazard. However, there are some cases where it can be out of their control. Serious forces of nature, like tornadoes or hurricanes, will be considered when filing your lawsuit, and the tree owner may not be liable in these circumstances.

What Do You Need To Prove In A Tree Injury Claim?

If you sustain severe injuries from your tree injury, there are a few steps you need to take to prove that the defendant was at fault. To file a successful claim, you and your personal injury lawyer need to demonstrate the following:

Duty Of Care

The tree owner is obligated to ensure their property is always safe. If they aren’t properly maintaining it, they risk seriously injuring someone. To be compensated, you need clear evidence that the defendant was responsible for maintaining the tree that caused your injury.


When a property owner ignores a potential safety hazard, and people are injured, they can be liable for damages. You must prove that your injuries resulted from the tree owner’s negligence. For example, if a falling tree limb hurt you and the owner knew about the hazard beforehand, you can file a negligence claim.

The Tree Caused Your Damages

Lastly, showing a connection between the tree fall and your injuries is crucial to winning your case. To do this, you need to have documentation of the incident, including police reports, medical records, or anything else that shows the link between the accident and your condition. Hiring an expert witness to make the connection can also strengthen your claim.

Can I Recover Damages In A Tree Accident?

If you succeed in proving your case, you’ll be eligible for any compensation related to damages. Based on your case, this can include:


  • Medical bills related to the accident
  • Pain and suffering
  • Out-of-pocket expenses
  • Earnings lost

In addition to paying you for damages, the defendant may also be required to fix their property to ensure it’s in a safe condition and avoid future issues. In most cases, courts will grant rewards based on concrete proof of expenses rather than unquantifiable damages.

Our Personal Injury Lawyers Are Here To Help

At Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, PLLC, we currently handle multiple tree branch fall cases in the city and have a proven track record of helping clients obtain compensation for their losses. One of our clients who suffered severe skull and brain injuries received a $3,875,000 settlement from her case after our tree expert testified on her behalf. They connected her injuries to a previous construction project that affected the tree’s health and caused the accident.

While being struck by a tree is uncommon, hundreds of these incidents still take place every year. When a tree hits a victim, it can cause lifelong injuries and trauma that may even lead to death. If this has happened to you, hiring a professional personal injury lawyer will guide you through filing a successful claim. Call us at (866) 506-3694 if you have any questions, or use our contact form to schedule a free initial consultation today.