I was walking into work last week when I noticed someone lurking around my company's dumpsters hauling a big, dark trash bag and at that moment, I knew what they were doing - they were going to throw their trash in our dumpster.

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The idea of someone using our dumpster to get rid of their trash nagged at me all day. I really don't mind when those down on their luck dig into our dumpster to see what they can find and sometimes we even package things up and place them inside just for those individuals, but for a person to not pay for trash removal and just dump their trash in our dumpster, the one we pay for didn't sit well with me.

Not only is dumping your trash in someone else's private dumpster inconsiderate, but it's also illegal in the state of New York so if you're someone who has taken advantage of another's dumpster or trash can, you've broken the law.

READ MORE: Is Dumpster Diving Illegal in New York?

Obviously, there are public trash cans located in various places and those are fine to use as are the trash cans obviously placed in full view of the public like at the gas pumps, but even at the gas station, you should limit putting your trash into the can by the pump and not into the dumpster.

If you think that putting your trash in someone else's container isn't a big deal, consider this - dumping is illegal and depending on where you dump your stuff, if you get caught it's usually considered a misdemeanor and that means you could face heft fines and even jail time.

If you've been having trouble with people dumping in your private trash receptacle, there are a few things you can do to discourage illegal dumping including posting signs stating that dumping is not allowed, adding better lighting to the area to deter dumpers, and posting signs that the area is monitored by video and dumpers will be prosecuted.

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