Business Law – Essay Example

Doctrine of Respondeat Superior The Discussion If we talk about the doctrine of respondeat superior, we can say that this doctrine provides a chancefor a person to recover the damages from the employer only if the unauthorized act occurs within the scope of the employee’s duties. Under the doctrine of respondeat superior, the employer controls the behavior and actions of the employee and he is responsible for any unauthorized act done by the employee within the scope of the duty. The factors that determine whether the employer is liable for an employee’s misconduct include employee’s intention, time and place of the incident, job responsibilities of the employee, and the level of freedom allowed to the employee regarding the duties. The employer controls the time, place, and job responsibilities of the employees. Therefore, if an employee shows negligence at work or performs an unauthorized act during the duty, the employer is held liable for that unauthorized act of the employee.
In this case, the plaintiff is making use of vicarious liability and comparative negligence in order to recover the damages from the manager of the store. Both of the torts are logical because the damage was caused by an employee of that store. However, there are some defenses available to the employer under the doctrine of respondeat superior, which include unintentional misconduct by the employee and scope of the employee’s duty. In our case, the scope of the employee’s duty is the best defense available to the manager. Bekish and Nolan (2010) assert, “An employer may be responsible for the harm caused by its employee if that employee was acting within the course and scope of his or her employment at the time the accident occurred”. As the action of the employee was not within the scope of his duty, the manager of the store cannot be held responsible for the damage.
Bekish, A., & Nolan, D. (2010, February 19). United States: Employer Liability For Employee Cell Phone Use. Retrieved Aug. 26, 2010, from