I strongly suggest that when you are injured by a tree that you look for a lawyer who has experience in tree failure/collapse cases as I do. In 2014, I handled a case where a woman was struck by a tree that collapsed and fell on to her while she was riding her bike on a bike trail owned by the Forest Preserve District of Cook County. She died as a result of being hit by the tree less than a day after the occurrence.
The Defendant, the Forest Preserve District of Cook County claimed the tree came down because of a storm in the area that caused this tree and many other trees to come down during the storm. The Forest Preserve District claimed the wind speed at the time was in excess of 60 mph.. Because the Forest Preserve District is a governmental entity that is protected by the law that provides that when an occurrence takes place on "recreational property" the burden of proof is to show that the Forest Preserve was guilty of willful wanton misconduct which is conduct that is somewhere between careless or negligent conduct and intentional conduct. It is a very high standard to prove in a case. Also, the Forest Preserve is protected from acting in a discretionary manner which they claimed was the reason they hadn't taken down this tree earlier despite this tree and others were marked for removal. The Forest Preserve is also protected from any injuries that occur as a result of weather conditions. In this case, the Forest Preserve claimed that the tree came down solely because of weather.
After five years of fighting the case, thirty depositions including experts, and multiple Motions for Sanctions, Motions to Dismiss and a Motion for Summary Judgement, the family of the decedent was able to recover. The case was settled for one million dollars.
Handling tree failure cases is something that requires an attorney with substantial knowledge about trees and the different tree species' susceptibilities to weather and other climate factors. I learned and studied all there is to know about different tree species and what is necessary to look for in this type of case. If you have a tree failure case, make sure you have an attorney with experience in this type of area such as myself to handle this type of case because EXPERIENCE MATTERS!