Ohio Case on Negligent Hiring Demonstrates that a Higher Risk Requires Greater Due Diligence


According to the April 7, 2009 The Chronicle-Telegram, published in Elyria, Ohio, a negligent hiring lawsuit was filed on behalf of a sleep clinic patient that was sexually molested by a staff member.  The article is at:  http://www.chroniclet.com/2009/04/07/roundup-april-7-2009/

According to the article, the technician is currently facing gross sexual imposition and sexual imposition charges for allegedly molesting five victims. The lawsuit “accuses the sleep clinic of negligence for hiring (the worker) and failing to properly supervise him.” 

The article did not recount the basis for the negligent hiring claim.  However, the case does demonstrate a crucial point about the due diligence and the responsibilities of an employerthe higher the risk, the greater the duty of care. 

Patients in a medical facility are highly vulnerable and therefore at greater risk. Presumably, patients at a sleep clinic are even more vulnerable since they are there to sleep. In deciding how extensively to perform background screening, employers need to consider the risks involved.