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Criminal trespass

In Queensland, you have the right to privacy in your home or at your business.  If a person violates this right,
they may be committing  the offence of trespass.  

Under the Summary Offences Act a person must not enter into, or remain in someone’s house or yard, or business premises without their permission, unless they have a lawful reason to be there.

An example of people who may have a lawful reason to enter into someone’s house or yard, or business premises include: 

  • police and ambulance officers acting in the execution of their duty
  • a legitimate door to door salesperson who enters into a yard or business in the execution of their work duties; or an
  • authorised industrial officer entering into a workplace in the execution of their duties.

Police will use discretion when deciding to charge a person with the offence of trespass.  If you were going to a friend’s house and entered the wrong yard, it is unlikely you will be charged with an offence.  To avoid being charged with the offence of trespass, use common sense—ask yourself whether you have a right, or permission to be in someone’s house or yard, or business premises.  This should also be considered before making a complaint to police.

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