This preview shows page 1. Sign up to view the full content.
Unformatted text preview: at liability
in such cases is grounded on negligence of the defendant in knowingly keeping a
dangerous servant on the premises which defendant knew or should have known was
dangerous and incompetent and liable to do harm to the tenants.
Subsequent Florida decisions, beginning most notably with Williams v. Feather Sound,
Inc., 386 So.2d 1238 (Fla.2d DCA 1980), rev. denied, 392 So.2d 1374 (Fla. 1981), and
including Abbott v. Payne, 457 So.2d 1156 (Fla. 4th DCA 1984), and Garcia v. Duffy,
492 So.2d 435 (Fla.2d DCA 1986), have explored the cause of action in greater depth.
Although few in number, these cases have contributed a substantial commentary on the
elements [**11] of this cause of action and the factors to be considered in determining
liability. Although both appellant and appellee in their respective briefs rely heavily on
these cases, their interpretations of the rules and principles discussed differ somewhat,
and their arguments as to the applicability to the particular facts in this case vary widely.
The basic underlying rule of employer liability was stated in Williams, 386 So.2d at
Most jurisdictions, including Florida, recognize that independent of the
doctrine of respondeat superior, an employer is liable for the willful tort of his
employee committed against a third person if he knew or should have known
that the employee was a threat to others. (footnotes omitted).
All authorities appear to agree, as stated in Williams, that central to the task of judging
the employer's responsibility to investigate an employee's background is consideration of
"the type of work to be done by the employee." Id. at 1240. Stated in terms of the
"standard of care" required of an employer, the court in Garcia formulated the following
In general, the test is whether the employer exercised the level of care which,
under all the circumstances, the reasonably prudent man would exercise in
choosing or retaining an employee for the particular duties to be performed.
492 So.2d at...
View Full Document
This note was uploaded on 09/30/2012 for the course ENC 102 taught by Professor Deria during the Spring '08 term at FIU.
- Spring '08