Statutory Nuisance

Introduction to Private and Statutory Nuisance

What is a Statutory Nuisance?

It deals with indirect and unreasonable interferences to land. The tort of Statutory Nuisance regulates the relationship between neighbours and defines their mutual rights and obligations concerning the use of their land.

Basic Right

Every occupier/owner of land has the right to quiet and peaceful use and enjoyment of his/her land.

Nuisance Examples
  • Interference with amenity interests by creating Noise, Smell, and Dust
  • Actual Damage to property, flooding, noxious fumes, or vibration by neighbours’ act or omission
  • Encroachment (trees, tree roots, or overhanging branches).

Important

Under Personal injury Claims, Law on Statutory Nuisance encourages people to be good neighbours. The neighbours must have a proprietary interest in land to make a claim which effectively means that a person cannot claim in private nuisance if they are just a member of the landowners’ family, a guest, a lodger, or an employee. (as it is an indirect tort of land not tort of people).

Factors that are always considered

Intensity of interference

Everybody has to put up with some interference from their neighbours at some time or other, however, these interferences may become unreasonable when they occur frequently or for a long-time period.

Example
  • A neighbour who listens to loud music most of the time may cause a nuisance as compared to a neighbour who once or twice in a year plays a piece of loud music for a party.

Locality

The character or nature of the area is an important factor as well. A person living in or close to an industrial estate may find it difficult to establish a claim for the noise which emanates from such estate.

Whereas a factory or workshop in the middle of a residential area will be in the wrong locality, neighbours are likely to have a successful claim in the tort of Statutory Nuisance.

The sensitivity of the claimant

To be a nuisance, the defendant’s use of the land has to be potentially unreasonable to anyone. This implies that where someone is affected because of their sensitivity will be unable to claim. However, it may prove difficult to determine what is unduly sensitive.

Bad Intentions

The motive of the defendant may also be taken into account in the cases of a nuisance.

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Disclaimer​

While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided in this article, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. Each legal case and issue may have unique facts and circumstances, as a result legallex does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information provided. For further help and guidance, you can always rely on and seek advice from our experienced lawyers.

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