You may think that everyone is responsible only for their own actions. But if you are an employer, you may be held responsible for the actions of your employees as well. This policy has been implemented to make sure that employers are proactive in preventing employees from breaking the law, and also take into consideration how employers benefit partially from an employee breaking the law.

How To Know If You're Liable

For you to be held responsible for the wrongful actions of an employee, the actions would have to be performed within the scope of your employment. The degree to which you may be held liable is based on how much freedom your employee is given.

When employees act in a negligent manner that harms someone, the lawyer representing the plaintiff will often look for evidence that you did not properly train your employee. For instance, if you rent heavy equipment and an employee provides incorrect and dangerous advice on how to use the equipment, you may be found liable if you did not train your employee on how to instruct customers on the usage of the equipment.

When Your Employee's Actions Fall Outside The Scope Of Employment

You may be found not responsible for actions carried out by your employee if these actions are considered to not be a part of your employee's job. For instance, if your employee is making a catering delivery, but stops by his or her home and accidentally damages his or her neighbor's property, this wouldn't be considered a work-related accident and you would not be held responsible for this.

When You Hire Someone With A Shady Past

If your employee has a criminal history or if there is some other reason to believe that your employee would be a threat to others, this would be considered negligent hiring and you could be held responsible for any damages resulting from this. If you were not aware of these facts until after you hired the employee or if your employee appears to be careless, you could be held responsible for negligent retention. For this reason, it is always crucial to perform a criminal background check on anyone you hire.

Limiting the contact of your employee with the public, especially to children and the elderly, can also be helpful if you are concerned about the background of your employee. If you aren't sure your practices will protect you from liability, hire a small business attorney. Visit a website like to learn more.