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Someone hassling you? What can you do?

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Netlaw provides you with a number of specific sites which you can access from the boxes at the top and the bottom of this page.


Here is a general overview.


The law provides many protections for individual citizens.  Actual criminal behaviour is regulated by a number of statutes and enforced by the police. You bash someone and the police charge you with assault.  You threaten to knock their block off and the Court sends you to prison for threatening behaviour.


But if you are being hassled in a manner short of a breach of the criminal law then you have to trigger your own remedies and this can be done four ways.


Trespass Act 1980.  Under this statute, any owner or occupier of property can warn any other person, either in writing or orally, not to come on to their property again.  The warning lasts two years and any breach can be punished by three months imprisonment or $1000.


Domestic Violence Act 1995.   This statute is used to protect people in domestic relationships against violence which includes physical, sexual or psychological abuse.  A pattern of behaviour may amount to abuse, even though some of those acts, when viewed in isolation, may appear trivial.

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"Hi there - just wanted another opinion on an issue we are having. Our neighbour has been complaining to Animal Control about our dog barking. It's been going on for about a year and there have been approximately 6-8 complaints during that time. We've been very co-operative as we were mortified to think our dog was a problem. We use a bark collar (under duress)as requested by dog control and we have also had a web cam on him to record his movements and barking. Recent conversations with Animal Control suggest it is not nuisance barking and have just asked us to use the collar to keep the neighbours happy. They have interviewed our neighbours who don't think he's a problem. We have also had a few conversations with some neighbours and confirmed that. The neighbour is home all the time and records on a daily basis the times our dog is barking - we've seen this record and found it very disturbing as it notes when we are away for the weekend and when we had two dogs on the property (including the type of the dog). Our properties are situated in such a way that our neighbour would not know this unless they were regularly peering over the high fence, videoing our property or coming down our right of way driveway. We have had our dog for 4 years now and don't understand why it is suddenly a problem (same neighbour). We feel this is harrasment. What can we do?

Netlaw answers: These neighbours could have committed the civil torts of trespass and breach or privacy and could be sued for damages. Such damages would likely be modest and less than legal costs but if such action was threatened and they continued then you might well be successful in being awarded punitive damages and full legal costs. We have a number of civil law topics which cover these issues. The Harrassment Act topic is also useful to look at."

Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Assaults
"Interesting, but also see the very helpful Harrassment Act topic which is a beaut! I am curently going to use the Bond thing against my neighbours who are deliberately throwing rocks over on to our lawn. Dick - Hamilton - April 2007."
"Complicated but it fits in with the Harrassment Act and trespass Notices and I see you have both topics.
Leigh - Kati Kati "

"How frequently are these used? My neighbours throw abuse across the fence every single day. They also throw little pieces of rubbish on to my back lawn. I can put up with so much but every day?? KL - Manurewa

Netlaw replies - Not very often. the Judges don't like them and prefer the Police to handle neighbour disputes. But there are times when they should be granted."

Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Assaults
"The best topic I have seen so far. Everything I needed. My lawyer said I needed to pay in $2000 to get the thing started. I did it myself. It took some effort but I got there. He did not defend it and now, thanks to Netlaw and the Court staff, I have my Order from the Court in my hand. Money well spent (Identity withheld) Auckland - June 2007"
"Excellent documents and access to the precise law.The Court staff were helpful. Gayle. Coromandel."
"Really useful. One letter (and some draft documents) from me did the trick. I did not need to go near a lawyer. The "other" person was my partner's "ex" and she followed me to work almost every day threatening me but not in a criminal way The Police said she had not committed a crime. My letter worked. She has not done it since but my response looked really professional. Thanks - Barbara - Tauranga "
Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Assaults
"I did my own documents and got before a Judge and got my own order for protection. I reckon I did it faster then my lawyer last time I need such an order two years ago.
Thank you . . . . Sandie (not my real name)"

"Don't forget, you can do it yourself but if you are ona benefit your lawyer gets paid by legal aid. Annie Y - Auckland"
Feedback/Blogs/Reviews from related topic: Assaults
"Just what I wanted. I wandered around and around my search engines and could not get a document to download. Netlaw provided it! Sara. Hamilton. June 2007"
"Excellent. I found it easy too. I also looked at the Harrassment topic. It was very easy to understand. A local cop served the Trespass notice for me. He said they don't do it all the time but in my circumstances (urgency) the police were prepared to help. But your topic allowed me to do my own Notice and I really felt better for sticking up for myself. Donna - North Shore June 2007"
"Helpful for me. Thanks - Lee - Harwood"
"Helpful and straightforward. I like you Trespass Notice and easy tips for service etc. Hone. Auckland"
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