What type of attorney could tell me if I have a case for harassment by my neighbor?
3 attorney answers
I agree with the answer provided to you by my distinguished colleague attorney A. Scott Aalsberg. Any attorney in general practice can tell you that the person making the noise will be held to be liable. Good luck.
If you found this Answer helpful, please mark it as "Best Answer" Please be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.
A family member of mine was accused of having a dog that made too much noise and of mistreating his dog by letting it go out to the bathroom during the winter for five minutes. Yes, the person making that call can easily be harassing you. Make sure you record how loud your dog is to protect yourself from the accusations of noise, and pretty much any lawyer who handles civil cases can help you in this. Be careful - if you file charges first, he will likely file them in a counter claim.
While I am an animal lover and hate the idea, there exist collars that give a very mild shock when a dog barks that are useful for training, and I was won over to the usefulness of an electric fence when I got one in a home I bought - my dog wandered near it only once, and after that trained himself not to go near. And a relative used a bark collar effectively and for a very short time to train it out of their own dog.
But dogs bark. And if you are allowed dogs in a condo, it is probably unreasonable to expect that no neighbor's dog will ever emit a sound you can hear. Proof you are taking a young dog who will likely bark, and making efforts to train it, and that the sound is not unduly loud, will all help you defend against such charges (which should be your first goal, not making charges of your own, because his right to quiet enjoyment of his condo is a strong one).
Other things that will help you:
You were there first and he moved in after hearing your dog make whatever noise he is accused of making
He has complained about other dog owners - check with your neighbors and the condo association to see if that is the case.
If he calls the police, tell them if the dog is barking more because THEY are there, and that is an argument for you if called to court.
This should not be considered legal advice and is intended for educational purposes only. It does not constitute a contract for legal services between any parties. Answers are given to questions for which there may be additional facts not mentioned which might change the legal issues or consequences.
Any criminal or civil lawyer can tell you, but generally its the person who makes the noise who would be the guilty party of the harassment. Good Luck
If you think this answer helped you, please mark it as best answer. This answer is not intended to give legal advice or establish an attorney client relationship and is offered for general educational purposes only. NO INFORMATION GIVEN HERE IS TO BE RELIED UPON for any legal matter as this information may contain inaccurate information for your particular case.