Vail found not liable for negligent hiring or actions of a ski instructor

Vail won a trial this past summer brought by the family of a client for negligent hiring. The basis of the claim was an employee of Vail, a ski instructor, took a 17 year old client back to his apartment and allegedly raped her. The ski instructor was found not guilty of rape in a criminal trial but was found guilty of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

The instructor has an extensive DUI and misdemeanor record. However nothing indicated in his background a propensity for anything other than drinking and recreational drug use. The instructor had an impeccable work record as ski instructor.

For understanding the difference between a criminal act and a civil act see Same facts difference between civil and criminal cases, same reason for using the courts or Another Litigation versus Criminal example

This case, based on the reports helps explain the differences between a criminal act, which is solely the responsibility of the individual and a civil liability which can hold anyone liable for their acts if they are negligent.

At the same time, if you were basing your lawsuit on who caused the injury, wouldn’t you sue the ski instructor? You could transfer that anger to the employer, Vail, or you could sue the company because they have more money. Either way, holding Vail liable for the actions of any employee off work seems a little stress. Granted the ski instructor met the 17 year old client while on the job, but…..



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