What is the most overlooked value when purchasing a tree service for your property? Whether or not the contractor that you have hired is truly, fully insured!
Many people are unaware that the tree care industry is one of the most dangerous professions out there. Tree care employees work at extreme heights while using dangerous tools, such as chain saws. The danger is compounded by working near power lines, busy roadways and other infrastructure obstacles. These working conditions place urban tree work in the same category as logging, which is rated as the second most dangerous job in the USA and has a high risk of serious injury and/or death.
What happens when the contractor is injured on the job? Who is going to be responsible when an employee is hurt while performing a service; such as tree pruning, which is consistently rated as one of the most dangerous professions in the country?
Common law has set precedence that the homeowner becomes the responsible party for covering the medical and loss of wage expenses for the injured employee. Consequently, if you hire a tree service company without workers’ compensation insurance, the injured employee can (and likely will) seek financial payment from you directly, exposing you to a huge potential liability. These expenses are not generally covered by homeowners insurance. Therefore, homeowners for their protection should request proof of insurance by asking for an insurance certificate from the potential contractor prior to the start of the project.
Due to the high expense of Worker’s Compensation insurance, many companies tempt fate by not purchasing it. Four out of five tree care companies do not purchase worker’s compensation insurance.
Snell Tree Experts carries $1,000,000 for General Liability, $1,000,000 for Worker’s Compensation, and $1,000,000 for Automobile Liability. Our certificate clearly displays the coverage period, the amount of coverage not only for your property, but for our employees and our vehicles.
Before choosing a contractor, be sure to see proof of the company’s insurance!