Trespassing was made a crime because everyone has the right to enjoy their property without being bothered. Trespass is defined as a person who accesses another person's property without permission from the owner. Trespassing is normally considered a civil wrong for which compensatory damages are awarded, but trespassing with the purpose to commit a crime is considered a criminal offence and is penalised under Section 441 of the Indian Penal Code.

Because criminal liability is such a broad topic, the Indian Penal Code (IPC) divides it into 22 sections, beginning with Section 441, IPC and ending with Section 462 of IPC.


According to Section 441 of the Indian Penal Code, that whoever tries to enter the property in the possession of another with the intent to commit an offence or to intimidate, insult, or annoy any person in possession of such property, or who has lawfully entered such property but remains there with the intent to intimidate, insult, or annoy any such person, is said to have entered into such property with the intent to commit an offence.

As a result, criminal trespass occurs when a person enters or remains on another person's private property without permission or an express or implicit licence with the goal of committing a crime.



  • Entry into another person’s property

To commit the crime of criminal trespass, the accused individual must physically enter the property of another. There can be no trespass if the offender does not physically enter the victim's private property.

For Example- Mr Sharma throws his kitchen waste in front of Mr Kapoor’s house daily, in this Mr Sharma cannot be accused of criminal trespass as he has not physically entered the property of Mr Kapoor.

  • Possession of property

The plaintiff should have possession of the property in question, not the trespasser or anybody else. The mere possession of the property is enough to charge the trespasser with criminal trespass. The victim does not need to be the owner of the property.

The term "ownership" refers to an object's absolute rights and claims. It refers to the owner's ownership of an object, whereas "possession" refers to the actual control of an object.

It is not necessary for the person in possession to be present at the moment of the trespass; trespassing can occur even if the possessor is not there.

For example- buying gifts and delivering it to a person’s house against their will, is also a form of criminal trespass, even though at the time of delivering such gifts, the person is not present at the house.

  • Intention

For the unauthorised entry or stay, there must be a purpose to conduct an offence or to intimidate, insult, or irritate the owner of the property.

It would not be criminal trespass if it could be proven that Defendant's intention was not to do so.

For example- if some children are playing cricket outside A’s house. The cricket ball while playing went inside A’s house and one of the kids went running inside A’s house to catch the ball. In this case, the kid has no bad intention and therefore will not be liable for criminal trespass.


House-trespass is defined in Section 442 of the Indian Penal Code as entering or remaining in any building, tent, or vessel used as a human home, place of worship, or a place for the safekeeping of property with the purpose of committing criminal trespass. A human dwelling need not be a permanent resident of the defendant; occasional occupants such as schools or railway stations can also be considered human dwellings. However, in order for a structure to be considered a human residence, it must have walls or some form of security, and a simple fence will not suffice. Because this is an intensified type of criminal trespass, every house-trespass is criminal trespassing, but not every criminal trespass is not a house-trespass.

Since house-trespass is a crime that requires the defendant to be in real possession of the property, it cannot be committed if the defendant is not in possession of the property.


“Criminal trespass" is defined under Sec. 441 “House-trespass” is defined under Sec. 442 2. Sec. 447 gives the punishment for criminal trespass. Sec. 448 gives punishment for house trespass.3.Punishment for this is less. 3 months or fine up to Rs. 500 or with both. Punishment is severe than criminal trespass. 1year imprisonment or a fine of Rs. 1,000/- or both.4.Criminal trespass comes under the ordinary category of the offence of trespass. House trespass is considered to be an aggravated form of Criminal trespass.5.Criminal trespass may be committed on any property House trespass can be committed only in the case of dwelling buildings. 6. The trespasser should do a certain act of insult or intimation or annoy the property owner to be liable for criminal trespass. Trespasser will be liable for house-trespass even if one of his body parts enters the dwelling property of the owner.


If an outsider or even a known person enters any property in your possession with the aim to hurt or injure you, that person will be charged with criminal trespass under the IPC, and remedies can be sought in any court of law. In order to be charged with criminal trespass, you must have the intent to conduct a crime; mere awareness does not constitute criminal trespass. Furthermore, the severity of the sentence for criminal trespass would be determined by the aggravation that occurred during the commission of the offence.

House-trespass is a much more severe matter than criminal trespass; lurking house-trespass and house-breaking are intensified kinds of house-trespass; and, finally, house-trespass by night and housebreaking by night would be punished harshly.



  3. Criminal trespass –,there%20with%20intent%20thereby%20to ( last visited – 14-06-2021)

  4. Difference between criminal and house-trespass- ( last visited- 14-06-2021)

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