Chapter%2015 - Chapter15: Agency, Electronic Agents, and...

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Chapter15: Agency, Electronic Agents, and Employment at Will David Baumer, Spring 2003 Legal Environment of Business in the Information Age
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Agency Relationship When one person agrees to work for another , an agency relationship is created Most agency relationships occur in connection with employment relationships Agency relationships can generate liability for the principal or employer The legal rights and obligations created by electronic agents are becoming more important
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Basic Principles of Agency Law The principal is liable to third parties for the torts and contracts of their agents committed within the scope of their authority Agents are liable for torts but not for contracts committed within the scope of their authority Principals are not liable for actions of agents that occur outside their scope of authority Major issues in agency litigation Did an agency relationship exist? Was the agent acting within his scope of authority?
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Independent Contractors Unlike agents, employers are not liable for the torts of Independent Contractors (IC) There is an exception when the work is unusually dangerous Legally a lot is at stake in determining whether a person is an employee (or agent) or an IC Most important factor is control The more control an employer exerts over the way a job is performed the more likely the person is deemed an agent or employee Among other factors looked at by the courts are whether taxes were withheld , who supplies the tools, method of payment, level of skill and whether the person hired has her own business
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Formation of Agency Formation of agency relationship Can be oral unless the equal dignity rule applies Need not include consideration Many agency relationships are gratuitous Agency formation Could occur after the fact if the principal ratifies an act that was outside the agents scope of authority Could occur based on estoppel if a third party is led to believe that a person has authority to act for the principal Principal must do something that leads the third party to be misled Operation of law --family car doctrine
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Scope of Authority Principals are not liable for actions of agents that
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2011 for the course BUSINESS 411 taught by Professor Staff during the Spring '11 term at Youngstown State University.

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Chapter%2015 - Chapter15: Agency, Electronic Agents, and...

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