When timber is lost, due to theft, trespass, fire, or weather landowners may receive compensation through legal settlements or tax considerations, when they quantify the value of their loss.
If trees are stolen, how are losses determined and recovered?
We try to re-create former forests by comparing those areas to similar and adjacent forests. We measure the species and diameter of each stump and then extrapolate volumes from similar-sized and still-standing trees. Log prices are then multiplied by the calculated volumes. The sum of those tree values, based on market conditions at the time of loss, is the loss value. Plaintiffs may recover losses through negotiation or court action.
May plaintiffs claim any other losses?
Plaintiffs may seek often-higher damages based on Maine law, Section 2510, wherein trees are assessed law-defined values based on their diameter. A plaintiff may also seek triple damages and professional fees from the guilty party.
How much do damage estimates cost?
It depends on the amount of evidence and the extent of damage. We may spend a day or days measuring stumps and standing trees in order to create the local volume table and estimate damage/loss values. We provide court witness time as required. In Maine, only licensed foresters may appraise timber damages.
"Two Trees has provided valuable input in timber trespass cases both as to the actual trespass and information to calculate the appropriate amount of damages. Two Trees provided excellent service for my clients."
Michael J. Gentile
Preti, Flaherty, Beliveau & Pachios, LLP