$100,000 Recovery for Trespass and Cutting Tree

Andersen, Tate & Carr Atlanta real estate litigation lawyer Tyler Dillard recently recovered $100,000 for a client when the client’s neighbor trespassed and cut down a tree on the client’s property.

ATC Law’s client was a local Georgia business which owned several rental properties. One of the rental properties was located in Dekalb County, Georgia next to a trucking company. The trucking company hired an out-of-state construction company to do some grading work on the trucking company’s property. The construction company then hired a local sub-contractor who specialized in cutting and removing trees.

For reasons unknown to the client, the construction company and local tree-cutting company apparently crossed over a chain-link fence and cut down a large oak tree located on the client’s property. The client did not give any permission for this to occur, nor did the client want the tree to be cut.

Under Georgia law, if a trespasser cuts down a tree without permission, the victim is entitled to receive three times the value of the tree as it stood, plus attorney’s fees, plus reforestation costs, plus a likely award of punitive damages depending on the circumstances. Equipped with his knowledge of the law and an expert report from an arborist regarding the value of the tree, Tyler entered into negotiations with the corporate defendants.

Ultimately, prior to even filing suit, the corporate defendants’ insurance carriers agreed to pay a combined $100,000 to settle the claim.

In addition to this case, Tyler has also previously tried a two-day trial to verdict regarding trespass and cutting timber. In the earlier case, Tyler also received a verdict that was a complete win for his clients, which included three times the value of the tree, punitive damages, and an entitlement to attorney’s fees.

If you have a problem with a neighbor trespassing on your property or cutting trees that belong to you, you may have a strong claim for monetary damages. If you have questions or would like to speak to an Atlanta real estate litigation attorney regarding one of these issues, please contact Tyler Dillard and Andersen, Tate & Carr at 770-822-0900 or by filling out our online form.