Most employee injuries will be based on the employer’s negligence and his inability to provide safe or adequate working conditions. But how far does this liability extend? Can it be used if the employer caused an accident while under the influence? Our Los Angeles personal injury lawyers talk about the vicarious liability doctrine and how it can be used in your case.
Example of employer liability for intoxicated workers
In March 2013, after having had a good time at a local club, the general manager of a limited liability company in California was driving the vice president of a homeowner’s association board, who was also the client of the company for which the driver was working. The intoxicated general manager crashed into another vehicle, leaving the other passenger (the plaintiff) with severe injuries
that resulted in the amputation of his arm.
In his case, the plaintiff argued that the company was liable for its employee’s actions and that the defendant was acting within the scope of his work at the time of the accident, based on the fact that the two got together for a business meeting. The victim also based his case on the fact that the defendant had previously received a conviction for driving under the influence. The defendant argued that he was not acting within the scope of his work when the accident happened and that the two men were friends and were simply out for a drink. The plaintiff rejected the initial settlement offer, took the case to court and obtained a final settlement of more than 15 million dollars.
Vicarious liability in California
California allows for employers to be held vicariously responsible for the acts of an employee if he or she was acting within the scope of the employment contract. The acts for which the employer may be held liable are tortious acts.
If you were injured in a vehicle accident caused by a driver who was working at that time and was driving under the influence you can ask for an evaluation of your case.