Legal Ethics Responses

Need help with my Business question – I’m studying for my class.

Respond with 100 words each:

Lesson 5

Rebecca – This is an interesting case and something I personally see a few times a year. At my job, I see a lot of independent contractors working for larger companies. If those people get hurt it is not the larger company that is at fault because of what is in the contract. A lot of times it is written in their contract that if they get hurt on the job, that they larger company owes them nothing. That being said Jones should not have used the larger crane since he was directly told to use the small one. When doing my research for this case I would first look at the contract that Jones and Stevens had. Examining that would help me see if it is written that they are libable for any damages. I also would look into why Matthews was where the other workers are since he is labeled as an office worker. It does not seem they were working in the office if they had a crane out so he might have also been in the wrong area which could possibly cause the case to be dismissed. After looking at all of that I would have a better understand of the legal side of their contract and be better able to work the case.

Jamie – There are a few issues that would be raise in examining this case including:

  1. Why were the works left unsupervised?
  2. Were the employees considered independent contractors or employees of the company?
  3. What is the legal definition of employee and independent contractor?
  4. Who determines which type of worker the employee is considered? And if it isn’t stated in the contract they signed, how else would they have known?
  5. Is Chemco still held liable even though the works didn’t follow instructions?

To better determine how to properly classify a worker, these three categories are looked at, Behavioral Control, Financial Control and Relationship of the Parties (IRS 2020). A worker is an employee when the business has the right to direct and control the work performed by the worker, even if that right is not exercised (IRS 2020). This includes when and where to work like Jones and Stevens were told by Chemco when to come in and where to report. Does the business have a right to direct or control the financial and business aspects of the worker’s job? In this case yes, Jones and Stevens signed a contract for an amount to be paid to them based on hours worked. The type of relationship depends upon how the worker and business perceive their interaction with one another (IRS 2020). Jones and Stevens did have a fixed term agreement that would terminate in a general time period. The other concern to be examined is the fact that Stevens and Jones did not listen to the instructions that were given to them to do the task if the company is still held liable for injuries.

IRS. (2020). Understanding Employee vs. Contractor Designation. Retrieved from https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/understanding-employe…

Lesson 6

Roseline – Yes, the case was filed with the State Supreme Court in Mineola, New York. According to Nytimes.com, “the case went to trial for more than three weeks in State Supreme Court in Mineola, New York.” The Jury rejected the claim due to no evidence that Colitis died from the neck injury. I believe Benihana should have been partially responsible for the death of Mr. Colitis; because it was of their chef throwing flying shrimp that Mr. Colitis pugnaciously throw his neck back injured it and died couple months after he had two spinal operations. He died from a blood infection called septicemia according to the Nassau County Medical Examiner.

According to Mayoclinic.org, “septicemia is a potentially life-threatening condition caused by the body’s response to an infection. The body normally releases chemicals into the bloodstream to fight an infection. Sepsis occurs when the body’s response to these chemicals is out of balance, triggering changes that can damage multiple organ systems.” Mr. Colaitis may have caught the infection while in the hospital having the spinal operations. People that are hospitalized due to having surgery are at high risk of developing the blood infection septicemia. And the reason I said Benihana restaurant should be partially responsible; because if Mr. Colaitis did not injure his neck at the restaurant maybe he would not have the two spinal surgeries that may had cause the infection. It is very sad that Mr. Colaitis died the way he died leaving his wife and small children behind. But I cannot put all the blames on Benihana restaurant; because Mr. Colaitis knew in advance what the chef was doing, and it was up to him to had said no he did not want to participate.

Rebecca – According to the research I did, the case did go to court in 2006. According to the stories I see, the family did not win the case after going to trial. The jury consisted of 4 men and one women and they took only two hours to come up with the verdict. However when reading the articles I find a few things weird. In one article it says that they asked him to stop throwing the food at them. This restaurant reminds me of some we have here locally however when the customer asks the chef to not throw food (in case of a allergy etc) the chef complies with the request. It is hard to imagine the chef in this case not doing that. I do not think the restaurant should be liable. In my opinion there is not way to prove 100% that this was all caused by the incident. He could have fallen when he go home for all we know. In the article it also points out that he traveled to foreign countries a lot. Once the autopsy was done it was found that he died from many factors including septicemia (blood positioning). It also was never recorded in any of his medical visits to the doctor that this was caused by that incident.

Insurance Journal. 2006. N.Y. Jury Tosses Family’s Claim That Thrown Shrimp Led To Death. [online] Available at:

[Accessed 25 June 2020].


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