What is a tort? A tort is a civil wrong committed by a person against another. It is less serious than a crime. It may lead to a civil suit. Learn torts against property here.
Torts Against Property
The Torts against property are of two types:
- Torts against immovable property
- Torts against movable property
Torts Against Immovable Property
The following are the Torts against property affecting an immovable property:
- either by disturbance of the right to hold or possess it
- whether such disturbance is present or in expectation
- or by actual physical damage to the property
- by interference with it
- or impairing of the enjoyment of it
Browse more Topics under Law Of Torts
- Nature and Concept of Tort
- General Principles of Liability in Tort
- General Defences to an Action in Tort
- Vicarious Liability
- Joint Liability
- The Rules of Strict Liability
- Absolute Liability
- Extinction of Liability
- Tort affecting the person
- Nuisance as a Tort
- Torts Affecting Defamation
- Negligence Tort Law
- Remoteness of Damages – Law of Tort
- Legal Remedies in Tort
- The Consumer Protection Act – 1986
- The Motor Vehicle Act – 1988
Trespass to Land
General Trespass: Every person who possesses lawfully any land has a right to exclude others from entering over his land. If a person without permission or authority enters on his land will be treated as a trespasser.
- Trespass to land is also an offense under IPC(section 441) provided the requisite intent is present.
- To commit the wrong of trespass neither force, nor unlawful intention, nor actual damage, nor the breaking of an enclosure is necessary. “Every invasion of private property, be it ever so minute, is a trespass”
Trespass may be Committed
- By entering the land of the plaintiff.
- If a person remains there.
- By doing an act affecting the sole possession of the plaintiff in each case without justification.
Entry is essential to constitute a trespass: When a person is thrown upon the land by someone else he cannot be held liable as it is involuntary.
By remaining there
If a person who has lawfully entered on the land of another and continues to remain there even after his right of entry is ceased, he commits a trespass.
e.g. Licensee whose license has been terminated or extinguished by expiry can be sued as a trespasser if he does not vacate after request.
Doing an act affecting the sole possession of the plaintiff
- It means trespassing by placing things on someone else’s land
- Trespass not by actual entry. It may be by placing some physical things on others’ property. It may also be crossing someone’s property. For Example:
- Shooting over a person’s land
- Placing anything above or hanging on his land
- Planting trees in someone’s land
The owner of the land is entitled to the column of air space above the surface. According to the rule of law whoever has got the site is the owner of everything up to the sky and down to the center of the earth. E.g. If a man were to erect a building overhanging the land of another, he would commit trespass and action would be taken against him.
If a man throws a heap of stones or builds a wall or plants a post of rails on his neighbor’s land, and leaves them there as it is, action would be taken against him for the trespass.
Trespass by joint Owners
Joint tenants or tenants in common can only sue one another in trespass for acts done by one inconsistent with the rights of the other. E.g. demolishing a building, carrying away of soil, etc
Trespass by Animals
Trespass by a man’s cattle is dealt similarly to trespass committed by himself. If a man’s cattle, sheep or poultry or any animal trespasses into the land of another, the owner of the land is responsible for the trespass and the consequential damage. Unless he can show that his neighbor was bound to fence the area and had failed to do so.
Essential Elements for Trespass
- Entry essential
- Entry by an unauthorized person
- Liable for aerial or underground trespass
- Liable if a person remains on land after the right is ceased
- Every interference with the land of another is considered trespass
Questions on Torts against Property
State whether True or False
Q 2. Shooting gun over another’s land is not a trespass.
Q 4. Torts against property are of two types, Immovable and Movable.