A Tree Fell On My Car – What Insurance Covers This?
Usually, a tree falling on a car is the result of some very bad luck. Who can really help it if a branch breaks off a tree and falls on your car? That is of course, unless you parked under a dead Oak tree right before a tornado whipped through town. But other than using basic common sense and not parking under trees during storms, this is an unavoidable act of nature that will be covered by your auto insurance company, if you have the right coverage.
Scenario One: Your Tree, Your Car
Let's say you park your car in the driveway, right under a mighty Maple tree. You've been parking there everyday for ten years. One night a freak storm sends the tree crashing into the car, right on the roof. The tree now looks like a hot dog, and your car is the bun. Now you ask yourself, do I submit this to my auto insurance company or my home insurance company?
The first thing to do is look at your deductibles and compare the two. See which one is lower, and determine if the damage done to your car is higher than that deductible. If it is, then you can submit a claim and reap the benefits above and beyond your deductible. If the damages are less than your deductible, then it is not worth filing a claim. Secondly, contact your home insurance company and determine if such an event is covered under their "Acts of God" section. If so, then you are covered. If not, then you will have to submit it to your auto insurance company. However, you will need to have comprehensive or full coverage for the tree-damage to be covered. If you simply have liability or collision insurance, you are out of luck.
Scenario Two: A Stranger's Tree, Your Car
In this scenario, you may be able to have the owner or landlord pay for the damage with their homeowner's policy. However, this will be contingent on whether or not the homeowner was aware that the tree was dead or decrepit. You can not demand that they pay for it, if this was a simple act of nature. You should consult with a lawyer in this instance, as the laws, policies and situations will vary from case to case. If you can not get compensation from the homeowner's policy, then you can submit it under your full coverage or comprehensive coverage auto insurance policy. Again, it is important to remember that you should only make a claim with your auto insurance company if the cost of the damage to your car exceeds the amount of your deductible. And even then, you must consider the fact that your auto insurance premium will increase because you made a claim.
Conclusion: Each Case is Different
When a tree falls on your car, your options are limited. While you may be able to submit a claim with the homeowner's insurance policy, it will depend on your company and specific policy. The same goes for your auto insurance policy. If you do not have full or comprehensive coverage, chances are you will have to pay for the damages yourself. Yet another good argument of getting comprehensive coverage when you search for auto insurance quotes.