As a bar owner, am I responsible for my bartenders actions?

UPDATED: Sep 12, 2012

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As a bar owner, am I responsible for my bartenders actions?

As in, a customer brought her in dinner in reusable plastic bowls, she threw the bowls away. The customer has now taken me to small claims court over the recovery of his rubbermaid bowls. He lostbecause we are incorporated. But if he now sues the corporation, am I responsible for the bartender throwing them away?

Asked on September 12, 2012 under Business Law, Washington


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Okay generally speaking, with regard to employer liability, employers are responsible for the acts of their employees even if they did not play a part or intend any harm.  This stems from the concept first that emploters direct their employees and second, the employer is probably the deep pocket for compensation.  Now, I know that this is a concern for you but you really need to step back and take a look at the whole picture.  If she sues you again offer a compromise.  Is it really worth your time here for rubbermaid bowls?  Good luck.

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