If my neighbor is erecting an open compost heap along my back fence, what is my recourse?

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If my neighbor is erecting an open compost heap along my back fence, what is my recourse?

The compost pile is open, about 3 ft. high x 3ft. wide x 20 ft long; it leans against my chain link fence. He puts everything in it including his urine and feces. The odor is getting stronger and there are many flies. The fence is approximately 20 feet from my back porch and we (used to) enjoy cooking out and sitting on our porch. We both live in suburban housing communities that back up to each other.

Asked on August 17, 2011 Georgia

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

From what you describe, your neighbor is causing what is called a "nuisance" in the the legal profession. Essentially what you are dealing with is a source of annoyance or vexation. If matter from the neighbor's compost heap is entering your property, you also may have a "trespass" claim.

You should first meet with your neighbor and ask that the compost pile be relocated to another area of his property away from yours and the reasons for this request. If the compost pile is not moved as requested, you might consider contacting the health department to lodge a complaint to see if your neighbor can be cited and ordered to remove the compost pile since there is human feces and urine in it.

If that option does not work to your satisfaction, consulting with legal cousel as to your options is your next step.

Good luck.

 


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