The Stoddard Firm Blog

Camping Safety Depends on Reliable Propane Equipment

No matter how carefully we plan our hiking routes, douse our campfires, and secure our food against bears, there comes a point when most campers must trust our lives to the quality of our equipment. As well as being common in houses and businesses throughout Georgia, propane-fueled appliances are particularly popular for use at campsites, and in mobile residences. Portable, modular propane setups are a convenient way to cook and keep warm without a connection to natural gas pipelines. U...

Landlords Must Do More to Protect Tenants from Violence on Mayson Turner Road

The amount of security a landlord must provide depends on the likelihood of violence on or around the property. If violent crime is unheard of in a certain area, landlords don’t need to protect against it. When violent crime is a known threat, on the other hand, landlords are legally obligated to provide tenants with appropriate protection. Unfortunately, landlords often refuse to accept this as part of the cost of doing business, until they’re forced to pay for crime-related damages in co...

Amazon’s Network of Delivery Contractors Protects Amazon, Not Bystanders

Whenever you see an Amazon delivery truck out making its rounds, there’s a good chance it’s not technically owned by Amazon. And when you see a delivery truck with an obscure logo or no logo at all, there’s a good chance what it’s delivering was ordered on Amazon. This is because, in addition to its in-house delivery services, Amazon contracts with hundreds of local delivery companies. Although classified as “independent” subcontractors, many of these local companies are founded solely on ...

Poorly Regulated Transportation Companies Place Travelers at Risk of Serious Harm

When you’re traveling without a personal car, road safety probably isn’t high on your list of concerns. Cities like Atlanta, with a high volume of tourism and business travelers, have services available to get you where you’re going, especially to and from hubs like Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Other than figuring out budgeting and scheduling, most visitors don’t think twice about making use of hotel shuttles and similar services. After all, these are established companies, th...

Accident Survivors Can Still Sue When the At-Fault Driver Is Deceased

After a serious traffic accident, a survivor usually asks themselves several questions in quick succession. Am I going to be okay? Will everyone else be okay? Was it my fault? What am I going to miss out on? How will I pay for medical care and other expenses? When the answer to the first two questions is “yes,” survivors can jump right into figuring out responsibility and how to move forward. But what about when this isn’t the case? A fatality can make the next few questions more...

Georgia’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit Is Reexamining Older Cases – and It’s Working

The 2019 creation of Georgia’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit has allowed for much more effective follow-through on local sex trafficking cases. As the name suggests, the unit is dedicated exclusively to investigating, stopping, and prosecuting human trafficking in Georgia. That targeted focus of personnel and resources has allowed them to reexamine cases once written off as closed. Offering these cases the due diligence they’ve so often been denied isn’t just a moral win; the unit is ...

Landlords Are Responsible for Preventing Fire Deaths, Even in Case of Arson

There’s a popular myth that landlords are never legally responsible for any damage caused by arson. Even people who have never heard this myth repeated will often assume that, if an individual criminal can be blamed for the fire, then the property owner can’t be. This is not true. The reason is fairly simple: landlords have a duty to take all reasonable steps to prevent people from being harmed by fire on their properties, and preventing fires from starting is only part of that task. ...

The Response Process for Small Plane Crashes Fails to Address Serious Industry Failings

Small planes are popular for obvious and understandable reasons. Individual and family-sized planes, like those made by Mooney, Cessna, and Piper, have made independent flight accessible to more than just the super-rich. Unfortunately, these small planes are also one of the most dangerous ways to travel. Companies that design, sell, service, and rent small planes would like to attribute their high accident rate to the limited experience of amateur pilots, but there are very often more sini...

Atlanta’s Sex Trafficking Problem Continues to Traumatize Youth

It’s no revelation that Atlanta has a serious problem with sex trafficking. In 2014, Urban Institute published a study examining sex trafficking in eight of the U.S’s most notorious cities. Based on their findings, Atlanta’s sex trafficking industry had expanded significantly in the previous decade, surpassing even Miami’s. Ever since these numbers came to light, Atlanta has been trying to shed its “Sex Trafficking Capital” reputation, with new anti-trafficking programs and stronger anti-t...

Violent Crime Thrives on Landlord Apathy

Criminal violence is a massively complex issue with many interconnected factors. The behavior of landlords may not be the sole root of the problem, but it does play a much bigger part than many people realize. Once it becomes common knowledge that violence often happens on a particular property, and the perpetrators get away with it, other potential perpetrators become emboldened to hurt people on that property. In fact, that’s often how crime hotspots form — one or two businesses prove th...