Rain and wind cause damage to trees. During a hurricane trees falling during a storm cause as much or more damage than the wind itself. Homeowners are left with large oaks and pines covering their lawn and home.
Tree debris removal coverage can be complicated and varies from policy to policy. It is standard however for standard Homeowners Insurance Policies to exclude coverage for trees, plants and shrubs from wind or hail damage. This is referring to the actual plant. Most trees, plants and shrubs are only covered for items like lightening, fire, vehicle or airplane damage and vandalism. So the tree itself is typically not a covered item after a catastrophe event.
The removal of the tree from the covered items is typically something that is covered. Tree removal is considered getting the tree off the house and laying it on the ground.
If you think about the policy in a broad sense this is logical. If trees were covered for wind then every time a branch or leaf fell off it could be a claim. If a person has many wooded acres and a tree fell in the middle of the woods it would be a claim. The logic of the policy providing coverage to remove the tree from the covered item, is to be able to inspect and complete repairs.
This is why your adjuster will request an itemized bill to determine what was the cost to get the tree off the house, and what was the cost to cut up and haul the tree debris away. The cost of removal from the house is normally a covered item, and there is normally a dollar limit on the tree debris removal coverage.
If the tree does not fall on or damage your home, and just falls in the yard it is typically not a covered loss. It is important to understand this before you incur a large bill for tree debris removal that will not be able to be included in your insurance settlement.
Most importantly, if there is a tree on your home and you are having it removed, take pictures to show your adjuster and have a company such as Temporary Repairs lined up to tarp the roof and cover any holes as soon as the tree is removed.