Understanding The Intrusion Of Solitude Injury Claims

16 March 2018
 Categories: Law, Blog

You have the right to occupy and enjoy your personal space without getting bothered or disturbed by another person. If someone intrudes into your personal space, then you can sue them for the intrusion of solitude.

Note that the "personal space" can be a physical space such as your bathroom, office or hospital bed, but it can also be your virtual space such as your electronic communication gadgets calls or video feeds of your location. For example, a person can intrude into your personal space by planting listening devices on your phone or taking pictures of you in your home.

What You Need To Prove

Here are some of the things you need to prove to win an intrusion of solitude claim:

The Intrusion Was Intentional

For you to prove intrusion of solitude, you must prove that the defendant's actions were intentional. For example, a janitor who accidentally opens a public bathroom stall (maybe it doesn't close well) when you are doing your business is not guilty of intrusion of solitude. However, the janitor is guilty of intrusion of solitude if they force the bathroom door open knowing very well that the stall is occupied.

A Reasonable Person Would Find the Intrusion Offensive

The court will examine the actions of the defendant to determine whether a reasonable person would find them highly offensive; it is not enough to be a little embarrassed by the intrusion. For example, most people would not want to be recorded naked, so a peeping Tom would be guilty of intrusion of solitude if they placed video cameras on your dressing table.

The Intrusion Affected Your Private Matters

You also need to prove that the defendant's actions affected your personal matters. These are matters that you would reasonably expect to be private. For example, you don't expect personal conversations between you and your spouse to be made public, especially if you are speaking in your home; so, anyone who eavesdrops on such conversations is intruding on your solitude. However, you don't expect phone calls made in public to be private; so, those who overhear you in a public place are not intruding on your solitude.

You Suffered As A Result Of the Intrusion

Lastly, you will also need to prove some sort of suffering associated with the intrusion. This is usually not a problem if highly private matters of your life, such as matters involving your sexuality or nakedness, are involved. In other cases, you may need the help of an expert witness to prove your suffering.

For more information, contact a lawyer like Jack W Hanemann, P.S.