I remember a man New Jersey who shot at his neighbor’s drone out of the sky. You honestly don’t have to overreact when you see a drone around your property. I found it necessary to address the legal issues regarding drones.
A significant number of Americans do own drones in these modern times. However, there are many rules and regulations regarding the flying of drones. Follow this piece logically to understand the different rules that apply to the flying of drones.
Is it legal to Fly a drone Over someone’s house or property?
Legislation has not entirely caught up with this new drone technology. Drones rules that are in place exempt people that use drones for hobby or recreational purposes, which might be what you may be trying to do. Federal laws will soon be implemented to adequately regulate the flying of drones in the United States. However, many states have already passed some regulations regarding drones flying over someone else’s property.
For instance, in Florida, the law criminalizes using a drone for surveillance, which violates other people’s privacy. You can quickly look up your state online, then search “drone law”. If your state has not yet set clear guidelines and rules regarding drones, you should not worry, we got you covered! I’ll show you the best way to deal with your neighbors and safely fly your drone in your neighborhood without risking any legal implications.
Contact your neighbors
You should contact your neighbors and let them know you’ll be flying a drone in the area so they won’t be caught off guard. Not telling them could bring tension between you and them and may get you into legal troubles.
Reach out to them, explain that you are only doing it for recreational purposes and not any other malicious purposes. When they trust you enough, they will let you do your thing and not overreact like the man from New Jersey who took out a gun and shot at a drone. When given permission, you should try to fly the drone at convenient hours to avoid disturbing them with the drone noises.
Get Guidance From the Civilian Aviation Authority
You may want to get federal clearance before flying drones in your neighborhood if your state has not yet set out clear laws regarding drones. The Civilian Aviation Authority will give you clear guidelines on how to safely and legally fly your drone. Moreover, it prohibits flying a drone above 400 feet because it could interfere with flights.
What to do if a neighbor is Flying a Drone over your house
Two words, folks, don’t overreact. It would help if you reacted as healthy as you would when your neighbor annoys you. The man in New Jersey exaggerated and made a mountain out of a molehill.
Reach out to your neighbor by all means possible. You can try going personally to their residence and ask them politely to refrain from invading your privacy by flying drones over your home. Come to an amicable solution and advise them to do it in a public place like a park or other recreational area.
Most mature neighbors will appreciate the notice and act politely, but if your neighbor persists, you can try using the following legal means. Drones were once a concept of science fiction, but we live in a time of technological evolution.
Drones have many positives but also negatives. When you have one flying around your house, they will bring the noise to your home, and they could also be equipped with cameras, and someone could be watching you. What should you do when you see one that is owned by your neighbor flying around your property? What are the legal measures?
Private Cause of Action for Nuisance
You should file a legal lawsuit against your neighbor for private Nuisance. Doing this will make them stop immediately because no one likes lawsuits and the legal implications it could bring along. You could argue in court that the Nuisance is the noise the drone causes, the whirring of the blades, which is disturbing your tranquility.
Private Cause of Action for Trespass
It is another way of dealing with a problematic neighbor who won’t stop flying their drone over your premises even after you reach out. You could make a legal case of Trespass because the drone is flying over your property. Logically, you do not own all the air above you, but you do own the air above your property.
However, there are no clear laws that define how high someone holds the air above their property; the States have their regulations regarding this. Probably you now think that with all these limitations, it is hard to present evidence of Trespass to a court of law.
But don’t worry, with the help of a qualified lawyer, you can take a photograph of the flying drone and how high it flies, then present it to the court. It would greatly help convince the judge, and he will issue the right judgment in your favor.
Invasion of privacy
One of the scary things about a drone flying around your property is that it could have a camera. In this modern age, a camera is a powerful tool that a malicious neighbor could use to snoop around your property. If you suspect your neighbor could be using a drone to spy around your home, you should file a legal case against them.
Additionally, you do not need any drone specific legislation to file a complaint; please remember that you already have a cause of action against your neighbor under the tort of invasion of privacy. If the private cause of action for invasion of privacy is presented in court with sufficient evidence, the judge will order an injunction against flying the drone over your property.
Rules and laws for flying recreational Drones
Having a drone could be exciting and fun, but you should always remember that it is associated with many rules and regulations. If you own a drone and wish to fly it recreationally, I have outlined several rules that you need to follow to ensure that you safely.
1. Stay below 400 feet
Aviation authorities highly recommend flying your drone below 400 feet to avoid interrupting with flight paths. However, rules vary from country to country, so it is your sole responsibility to ensure that you adhere to your maximum height allowable in your region to avoid any legal implications against you.
2. Always maintain a visual line of sight
Whenever you fly a drone, always make sure that you have visual sight of it at all times. A common mistake that people are flying a drone make is relying on the drone’s FPV camera. Avoid this and ensure that you see where your drone is going and where it is at any particular time. Be sure to check the weather conditions and avoid flying the drone during bad weather that can impede your vision.
3. Do not fly over people
Flying a drone over people is strictly prohibited by the law. Therefore, if you had a fantasy of flying the drone over, people may be at a beach to get a great view. Unfortunately, it is not possible. It would help if you made it your initiative to fly your drone out of public spaces like stadiums, an open event, and any other place where large groups of people could congregate.
4. Abide by the local community guidelines while flying
Every civilized community has its own rules and regulations on every aspect of life. So be sure to check with your local authorities to get acquainted with your local regulations regarding drones in your area and be sure to abide by them to avoid any legal injunctions. If your state does not have any laws regarding drones, you may want to check the rules with the Country’s Aviation Authority
5. Do not fly during the dark
Do not make the mistake of flying at night, even if your drone has night lights. Darkness will deprive you of vision and limit your control over your drone.
We have discussed the rules, what about the applicable law? Let’s dig deeper into it. For you, a recreational Flyer, follow the Federal Aviation Administration law for recreational Flyers. This is a requirement for operating your drone for fun; you have to follow the Federal Aviation Administration rules for flyer organizations. So be sure to check with the Federal body to ensure that you are well equipped to fly a drone.
The main goal of this text is to equip you with the right knowledge about drones and the laws surrounding it. So if you are a drone owner, you now know what to do to avoid offending your neighbors and, if you are the drone owner’s neighbor, you now understand your legal measures against any drone Tort he commits against you. Therefore to create harmony, the rule of law must always prevail.