Attorney warns against these lawn mistakes – to avoid a 'lawsuit' this summer

Is your lawn-care routine breaking state law? Here's what you need to know – according to a lawyer

Lawn mowed with stripes with house in background
(Image credit: Alamy)

When it comes to lawn care, it can be hard to see how you can go too far wrong. Once you know how to edge a lawn correctly – and your cutting routine is up to scratch – you would be forgiven for thinking it is hard to make any significant mistakes. However, an attorney has warned otherwise. 

Michigan-based lawyer David Clark from The Clark Law Office has served as an attorney for 35 years in the state and across the US. And during this time, David has encountered some significant lawn mistakes that have consequences beyond browning or patching. 

While it is essential to check how the law differs in your local state, there are some common mistakes that you should note as you care for your lawn this summer and beyond. These are the important garden ideas that lawyers want you to know about. 

Lawn mistakes that could be breaking the law 

Flower and plant beds. Borders of lupins, Inula, Campanula and meadowsweet.

(Image credit: Future Publishing Ltd)

How can you avoid trouble when experimenting with the best lawn edging ideas in your yard? Here are the mistakes to avoid, according to an expert.

1. Forgetting an equipment license 

'Whether you're doing your lawn by yourself or hiring a service provider, ensuring that anyone who uses license-operated equipment has that credential is key to a safe and successful lawn project,' David says. 

The lawyer warns that many gardeners are at risk of having hand and power tools (such as chainsaws and hedge trimmers) operated on their properties by people who don't have the competence to use them. This could pose a threat to your safety and may even lead to a lawsuit. 

'Not only can lawn owners lack the guarantee that their lawn project will yield the best possible results, but they may also be exposed to lawsuits should the operator and/or the equipment pose a health or safety risk to anybody,' he explains.

Lutyens style bench in English garden with roses in flower beds

(Image credit: Peter Chatterton)

2. Not registering your waste 

Concrete boarder edging with grass and evergreen tree

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Whether you're putting your best lawn mower to good use or pulling weeds from your border, you will inevitably generate garden waste. However, in some states or local communities, carrying waste away from your garden project or maintenance requires registering with authoritarian bodies.

'Failing to do so could cause your lawn operations to be halted or for the lawn owner to be fined,' David warns. 'This is a non-negotiable as this practice ensures that sewage and drainage systems won't be clogged or damaged, avoiding a neighborhood-wide underground system failure.'

It is recommended to check the law in your local area to ensure you comply with all garden waste rules – to avoid falling into any trouble this season and always. 

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.