Suppose a homeowner hires a contractor to haul debris off their property to the local dump. Can the homeowner be held liable if the contractor instead just illegally dumps the debris by the side of the road? Is there any "due diligence" required by the homeowner in who they contract, meaning that liability could depend on if the homeowner hired a legitimate trash hauling company, or just a guy with a truck? Is there any dependence on where the illegal actions take place, like if the trash is taken off-site and dumped illegally without the homeowner's knowledge, or if it's just dumped in the adjacent vacant lot in full view of the homeowner? Assume a US jurisdiction, not sure if the answer will vary much by state.

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    Does this answer your question? Is it legal to have someone dispose of garbage for you? Commented May 21, 2021 at 17:49
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    That is a related but significantly different question. That dealt with hiring a presumably unlicensed trash disposal firm, who might or might not act properly. This deals with liability for a contractor dumping improperly. This should not be closed as a duplicate. Commented May 21, 2021 at 18:20
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    This is actually quite a complicated question. And the answer may vary by state as liability arises mostly under state law, but not entirely. A number of facts about the nature of the garbage, the relationship with the contractor, and the nature of the harm caused (beyond it just being where it isn't supposed to be) could all matter. I'll answer if I have time.
    – ohwilleke
    Commented May 21, 2021 at 23:01


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