689 So.2d 638
96-0844 La.App. 4 Cir. 2/12/97, 34 UCC
GULF STATES SECTION, PGA, INC. and The Travelers Insurance Company
WHITNEY NATIONAL BANK OF NEW ORLEANS.
Court of Appeal of Louisiana,
Feb. 12, 1997.
Thomas H. Matuschka, Grayson H. Brown, Law Firm of Grayson Brown, Baton Rouge,
Jay Corenswet, Mary L. Grier Holmes, Milling, Benson, Woodward, Hillyer, Pierson &
Miller, New Orleans, for Defendant/Appellee.
Before BYRNES, ARMSTRONG and JONES, JJ.
[96-0844 La.App. 4 Cir. 1] ARMSTRONG, Judge.
In this suit to recover payments made on forged checks, the plaintiffs, Gulf States
Section, PGA, Inc. (the "PGA"), and its insurer, The Travelers Insurance Company
("Travelers"), appeal from a judgment rendered against them and in favor of the plaintiff,
Whitney National Bank of New Orleans ("Whitney"). We now affirm the judgment of the trial
During a four month period in 1992, from May through August, an employee of PGA,
Adrenetti Collins, a secretary, forged and negotiated eighteen PGA checks totalling
$22,699.81. Travelers paid the PGA this amount, less a deductible, under an insurance
policy. Travelers and PGA instituted this action against Whitney, which paid the forged
instruments, seeking reimbursement. Collins was hired as a temporary employee sometime
in February or March 1992 by Robert Brown, the executive director of the Gulf States
Section of the Professional Golf Association. He employed Collins, whom he knew as
Elizabeth Couch, an alias, as a full-time employee in May 1992. Unbeknownst to Brown, in
1982 Collins had been convicted of the theft of $5,445.07 from a previous [96-0844 La.App.
4 Cir. 2] employer, which she obtained by forging and negotiating twenty company checks.
She also had a 1985 conviction for issuing worthless checks.
The trial court found that Brown's negligence contributed to the forgeries and therefore
the defendants were precluded from recovering from Whitney, which made payment on the
forged instruments. Brown testified