In some cases, the tree owner could be held liable, especially if he or she has received complaints about the dying tree shedding its branches, or if he has recognized the harm it might cause. However, in some instances, the neighbor who has been hurt could also be held liable under a legal principle called contributory negligence.
In contributory negligence, the tree owner might argue that the plaintiff knew about the probability that the tree branch protruding to his property might cause him harm, and so his failure to exercise self-help might have contributed to his injury. The plaintiff-neighbor should have instituted some measures to avert the incident, such as cutting off the offending tree limb.
At Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, we believe Wisconsin residents hurt due to the negligence of another party should exercise their right to explore the possibility of seeking justice and compensation through legal action. Call us at (414) 271-0900 to speak with one of our personal injury attorneys today.