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Case No. 19-0985

Estate of Patrick Fields, by its Administrator, Michelle Fields, Michelle Fields, Individually, K.F., By Her Next Friend, Michelle Fields, A.F. By Her Next Friend, Michelle Fields, Jerry Fields, Individually and Mary Jane Fields, Individually
v.
Troy Shaw; Michael Shaw and Sherry Shaw, Individually, and d/b/a Shaw Trucking and/or Shaw Farms; Landus Cooperative d/b/a Farmers Cooperative Company; and Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company

Appellees

Estate of Patrick Fields, by its Administrator, Michelle Fields, Michelle Fields, Individually, K.F., By Her Next Friend, Michelle Fields, A.F. By Her Next Friend, Michelle Fields, Jerry Fields, Individually and Mary Jane Fields, Individually

Appellants

Troy Shaw; Michael Shaw and Sherry Shaw, Individually, and d/b/a Shaw Trucking and/or Shaw Farms; Landus Cooperative d/b/a Farmers Cooperative Company; and Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Company

Attorneys for Appellees

Brian P. Galligan
James M. Thomas
Greg C. Schaffer
Robert T. Simon, Travis E. Davis, and Evan A. Garcia

Attorneys for Appellants

Brenda K. Wallrichs
Kent A. Gummert

Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals Opinion

Opinion Number:
19-0985
Date Published:
Oct 07, 2020
Summary

            Appeal from the Iowa District Court for Story County, James A. McGlynn, Judge.  REVERSED AND REMANDED.  Heard by Vaitheswaran, P.J., and Tabor and Schumacher, JJ.  Opinion by Tabor, J.  (21 pages)

            Landus Cooperative (Landus) appeals the denial of its motion for summary judgment, contending the district court erred in finding a genuine issue of material fact whether an employer‑employee relationship existed between Landus and Troy Shaw.  Landus argues under guidance from the Restatement (Second) and the Restatement (Third) of Torts on negligent hiring, it cannot be held directly liable for the harm caused to a third person by the employee of an independent contractor.  OPINION HOLDS: We find there is no genuine issue of material fact that Landus directly hired or retained Troy as its employee.  Because the Restatements do not impose direct employer liability for the harm caused to third parties by an employee hired by its independent contractor, we reverse the court’s second summary judgment ruling on the negligent-hiring claim.  We also reverse the court’s ruling on the motion to dismiss the punitive-damages claim as it stemmed from the negligent-hiring claim.  We remand for further proceedings. 

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