Wisconsin Trespass Law
943.13 Trespass to land. (1e) In this section:
(a) “Dwelling unit” means a structure or that part of a structure
which is used or intended to be used as a home, residence or sleeping
place by one person or by 2 or more persons maintaining a
common household, to the exclusion of all others.
(az) “Implied consent” means conduct or words or both that
imply that an owner or occupant of land has given consent to
another person to enter the land.
(b) “Inholding” means a parcel of land that is private property
and that is surrounded completely by land owned by the United
States, by this state or by a local governmental unit or any combination
of the United States, this state and a local governmental
(c) “Local governmental unit” means a political subdivision of
this state, a special purpose district in this state, an instrumentality
or corporation of the political subdivision or special purpose district
or a combination or subunit of any of the foregoing.
(d) “Place of employment” has the meaning given in s. 101.01
(e) “Private property” means real property that is not owned
by the United States, this state or a local governmental unit.
(f) “Open land” means land that meets all of the following criteria:
1. The land is not occupied by a structure or improvement
being used or occupied as a dwelling unit.
2. The land is not part of the curtilage, or is not lying in the
immediate vicinity, of a structure or improvement being used or
occupied as a dwelling unit.
3. The land is not occupied by a public building.
4. The land is not occupied by a place of employment.
(1m) Whoever does any of the following is subject to a Class
(a) Enters any enclosed, cultivated or undeveloped land of
another, other than open land specified in par. (e) or (f), without
the express or implied consent of the owner or occupant.
(am) Enters any land of another that is occupied by a structure
used for agricultural purposes without the express or implied consent
of the owner or occupant.
(b) Enters or remains on any land of another after having been
notified by the owner or occupant not to enter or remain on the
(e) Enters or remains on open land that is an in holding of
another after having been notified by the owner or occupant not
to enter or remain on the land.
(f) Enters undeveloped private land from an abutting parcel of
land that is owned by the United States, this state or a local governmental
unit, or remains on such land, after having been notified by
the owner or occupant not to enter or remain on the land.
(1s) In determining whether a person has implied consent to
enter the land of another a trier of fact shall consider all of the circumstances
existing at the time the person entered the land,
including all of the following:
(a) Whether the owner or occupant acquiesced to previous
entries by the person or by other persons under similar circumstances.
(b) The customary use, if any, of the land by other persons.
(c) Whether the owner or occupant represented to the public
that the land may be entered for particular purposes.
(d) The general arrangement or design of any improvements
or structures on the land.
(2) A person has received notice from the owner or occupant
within the meaning of sub. (1m) (b), (e) or (f) if he or she has been
notified personally, either orally or in writing, or if the land is
posted. Land is considered to be posted under this subsection
under either of the following procedures:
(a) If a sign at least 11 inches square is placed in at least 2 conspicuous
places for every 40 acres to be protected. The sign must
carry an appropriate notice and the name of the person giving the
notice followed by the word “owner” if the person giving the
notice is the holder of legal title to the land and by the word “occupant”
if the person giving the notice is not the holder of legal title
but is a lawful occupant of the land. Proof that appropriate signs
as provided in this paragraph were erected or in existence upon the
premises to be protected prior to the event complained of shall be
prima facie proof that the premises to be protected were posted as
provided in this paragraph.
(b) If markings at least one foot long, including in a contrasting
color the phrase “private land” and the name of the owner, are
made in at least 2 conspicuous places for every 40 acres to be protected
(3) Whoever erects on the land of another signs which are the
same as or similar to those described in sub. (2) without obtaining
the express consent of the lawful occupant of or holder of legal
title to such land is subject to a Class C forfeiture.
(3m) An owner or occupant may give express consent to enter
or remain on the land for a specified purpose or subject to specified
conditions and it is a violation of sub. (1m) (a) or (am) for a
person who received that consent to enter or remain on the land
for another purpose or contrary to the specified conditions.
(4) Nothing in this section shall prohibit a representative of a
labor union from conferring with any employee provided such
conference is conducted in the living quarters of the employee and
with the consent of the employee occupants.
(4m) This section does not apply to any of the following:
(a) A person entering the land, other than the residence or other
buildings or the curtilage of the residence or other buildings, of
another for the purpose of removing a wild animal as authorized
under s. 29.885 (2), (3) or (4).
(b) A hunter entering land that is required to be open for hunting
under s. 29.885 (4m) or 29.889 (7m).
(c) A person entering or remaining on any exposed shore area
of a stream as authorized under s. 30.134.
(5) Any authorized occupant of employer−provided housing
shall have the right to decide who may enter, confer and visit with
the occupant in the housing area the occupant occupies.
History: 1971 c. 317; 1977 c. 173, 295; 1979 c. 32; 1983 a. 418; 1987 a. 27; 1989
a. 31; 1993 a. 342, 486; 1995 a. 45, 451; 1997 a. 248; 1999 a. 9; 2003 a. 33.
The arrest of abortion protesters trespassing at a clinic did not violate their free
speech rights. State v. Horn, 139 Wis. 2d 473, 407 N.W.2d 854 (1987).
Administrative code provisions requiring hunters to make reasonable efforts to
retrieve game birds killed or injured do not exempt a person from criminal prosecution
under sub. (1) (b) [now sub. (1m) (b)] for trespassing upon posted lands toretrieve birds shot from outside the posted area. 64 Atty. Gen. 204.