Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Security Guard's Acts Found to Be Outside The Scope of His Employment

In Ali v. State of New York, the claimant was standing in the waiting area of the New York State Workers' Compensation Board when he overheard a nearby security guard talking on a cell phone.  The security guard apparently learned of his grandmother's death and in reaction to the news he punched a wooden bench, causing it to strike and injure the claimant for which the claimant sued the State.  After trial, the Court of Claims granted the State's application to dismiss the claim and on appeal by the claimant the Second Department affirmed.  The Court found that the security guard was acting solely for personal motives unrelated to the State's business, and therefore the State could not be held vicariously liable for the security guard's actions.  The Court further found that the claimant failed to demonstrate that the guard's conduct was reasonably foreseeable to the State.   

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