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Tree Evaluation
<Scott Diffenderfer>
I have been asked to evaluate a tree on a
property next to a clients residence. This is
a potentially sticky situation.

My question is this - what can I do legally and
what value and credibility will this evaluation
have if I can't get onto the property to inspect
the tree?

Thank you.
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<Ed Milhous>
Reply to post by Scott Diffenderfer, on April 05, 2000 at 08:16:00:

Hi, ScottkinsÂ
Are you to evaluate its health? Its structural integrity? Is your client the instigator? What is his/her motivation?
If you were to say the tree should be removed, the neighbor of your client may view your evaluation with disdain, simply because there is an appearance of a conflict of interest. On the other hand, the neighbor may happily embrace your suggestions, especially if s/he is oblivious regarding the tree.
If you cannot go on the property, report what you can see w/out entry to the site, and state the limitations. Try to remain neutral. Suggest a third party evaluation. CYA
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<Russ Carlson>
Reply to post by Scott Diffenderfer, on April 05, 2000 at 08:16:00:

I like Ed's suggestions. Go cautiously.

Best if you can get cooperation from the tree owner, at least to let you on the property for inspection. Perhaps a brief letter to your client explaining in detail what needs to be done and how long it will take. Of course, if the neighbors aren't talking. . .

Sounds like a very long Assumptions and Limiting Conditions section.
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Reply to post by Scott Diffenderfer, on April 05, 2000 at 08:16:00:

Hi Scott!
This goes back to the first commandment in consulting, "Know thy assignment." Find out the reason for the appraisal so that you can decide what method(s) to use, AND whether to take the assignment at all. As others have astutely stated, CYA, and good luck!
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<Scott Diffenderfer>
Reply to post by lewbloch, on April 05, 2000 at 08:16:00:

Thanks all for your comments. The situation
turned out to be a need for a confimation of
possible tree failure. The client wants to
know if he has justification to approach the
tree owner about the tree and it's condition
(the tree leans and is over the clients house -
it's about a 34 inch red oak). I did an
"eyeball" evaluation and then told the client to
discuss the situation with the property owner.
I also indicated that if he wanted a complete
evaluation that I would need writen permission
from the property owner. Comments?
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