Legal Maxim

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Literal Meaning

Use your own property in such a manner as not to injure that of another.

Origin

Latin

Explanation

The maxim ‘sic utere tuo ut alienum non laedas’ means that one must use his property so as not to injure the lawful rights of another. It is a well-settled principle that a property owner may put his own property to any reasonable and lawful use, so long as he does not thereby deprive the adjoining landowner of any right of enjoyment of his property which is recognized and protected by law, and so long as his use is not such a one as the law will pronounce a nuisance.

Case Laws

The Supreme Court of Canada in Reid v. Linnell, while referring to the above maxim, held that the rights to excavate as they did is unquestioned; but the exercise of that right entailed an obligation to do for the protection of those who they knew might be expected to make use of the adjoining yard what a prudent and reasonable man would regard as requisite, or usually sufficient, to prevent a person using ordinary care from falling into the excavation while moving about the yard as was customary.