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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
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    10

    Default Can I Be Sued Over a Sign I Place in My Yard

    My question involves defamation in the state of: Maryland.

    I want thae developer to install a fence (4k cost) to keep individuals from falling down a 15 foor hill in my back yard. Which the developer created to remove dirt foe new homes. For the last 50 years the land behind my yard has been flat.

    I put up a sign as a deal maker: you put the fence and I'll remove the sign . I have lived in the same house for 50 yrs.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Posts
    1,177

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    I read through this thread -- albeit not carefully.

    If I understand the facts correctly, you've posted a sign that the neighboring property owner doesn't like (a sign which says "Female Review" -- or, given how you described the sign, "Female Revue" would seem more likely -- and has nothing else on it) because you believe it may impair the neighbor's ability to sell the neighboring lot. You are doing this in order to extort the neighbor into installing a fence behind your property. As far I can tell, the neighbor has no legal obligation to install the fence.

    This has nothing to do with libel (or any other form of defamation). It doesn't seem to me that you have any obligation to take down the sign. However, if, in fact, your sign impairs the neighbor's ability to sell the property, you could be liable for interference with prospective economic advantage. I also mentioned extortion. I haven't looked up the law, but that's also a possibility.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    6,160

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    If in fact the builder remove the lateral support of OP's property, then they( OP) would be in a good position to have that lateral support replaced by at least a retaining wall and perhaps a fence.

    The common law is well established.

    It is an established principle of law that every owner of land has the right to lateral support from the adjoining soil, and if a landowner removes the soil from his own land so near the land of his neighbor that his neighbor's soil will crumble away under its own weight, he is liable for damages so occasioned. The right of support to land from the adjoining soil is a right of property, and not an easement, and if that support is withdrawn and injury ensues, he can maintain an action for damages without proving negligence or want of skill on the part of the adjoining owner.
    https://scholar.google.com/scholar_c...en&as_sdt=4,21

    The sign, for all you who do not get the point, is to bring attention to the fact that there is a 15 foot drop-off behind the sign. The sigh itself and what it says has no bearing on the situation.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Lake Chapala
    Posts
    2,874

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    Quote Quoting budwad
    View Post
    The sign, for all you who do not get the point, is to bring attention to the fact that there is a 15 foot drop-off behind the sign. The sigh itself and what it says has no bearing on the situation.
    Oh we get the point all right! The sign has complete bearing on the situation - it's there specifically as an attempt to force the builder to put up a fence. (As in "As long as this sign is here you won't be able to sell anything in the development. If you want me to remove the sign - so you can sell properties in the development - you must build a fence.")

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    6,160

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    You can talk about someone making an ultimatum or you can speak of the law. OP is looking for what works for them. The builder cannot remove the lateral support of OP's land. That is the law. Just because he/she doesn't understand that doesn't make it any less according to the law.

    The sign and what it says doesn't matter one iota.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Posts
    467

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    Quote Quoting budwad
    View Post
    You can talk about someone making an ultimatum or you can speak of the law. OP is looking for what works for them. The builder cannot remove the lateral support of OP's land. That is the law. Just because he/she doesn't understand that doesn't make it any less according to the law.

    The sign and what it says doesn't matter one iota.
    What the sign said mattered because he listed it under "Defamation, slander, and libel" and the general consensus was that the contents of the sign were somehow libel or defamation against the builder. It was the incorrect placement and wording in the OP that caused the sign to be brought up.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    18,908

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    You are going to have to explain further. What sort of sign? Is your lot covered by the covenants for the development? Is the sign in the public right of way? There are really several levels to this.

    If your sign is on a state road right of way, it's likely illegal. Signs within the right of way require a permit and are limited to legitimate traffic control devices. Signs further back from the roadway are generally legal, but there may be certain local ordiances or covenants that restrict these.

    Anything that is libelous (i.e., a falsehood with intent to injure) is civilly actionable no matter where you put it (if the public can see it).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    it's a plastic 6 foot long sign. Was originally used for a bar years ago.My neighbor purchased it from a yard sale. Sign on my private property . I sold the land to a developer which in turn sold the finished lots to a builder. The builder is the one that caused the 15 foot hill. I want the builder just to put a fence up.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    18,908

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    Is the sign lighted? Were there coventants made when you sold the land? Your best bet is to stop playing childish games and go get yourself an attorney who can look at the situation and advise the best way to proceed.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    2,754

    Default Re: Can I Be Libel for Having a Sign in My Yard

    What is written on the sign?

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