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Case Analysis: Sprod Bnf V Public Relations Oriented Security Pty Ltd

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Case Analysis: Sprod Bnf V Public Relations Oriented Security Pty Ltd
Introduction
At first, the NSW Supreme Court found that the Public Relation Oriented Security was not vicariously liable as the assault was motivated by guard’s blood lust and want beyond the reasonable acts. In Sprod bnf v Public Relations Oriented Security Pty Ltd[1], the court of appeal was faced with complex difficulty concerning the employee’s authority either the authority of the employee is within the scope of employment or not which may resulted in vicarious liability.

Material Facts
The appellant, Mr. Sprod who was acting drunk and assaulting inside a pizza shop, prompted the owner of the shop to call security guards from the respondent, Public Relations Oriented Security Ptd Ltd. The assault occurred after the appellant ignore the guard’s warning. The court of appeal found that the assault was ‘incidental’ to the employment of the security guards and there is a connection between the unauthorized acts of the guards and the acts with their employer. In the end, the court of appeal held that the assault should be regarded as within the scope of their employment, thus, vicarious liability was apply to the respondent and the appeal was upheld.

Legal Issues
The legal issued in this case is 1. Regarding the unauthorized acts by the guards to extend their employer with vicarious liability[2]. 2. The possibility that an employer can be liable for unauthorized acts by its employee if there is connection with authorized acts[3]. 3. Recognizing the reason for the assault was not an independent act from the guards but in order to fulfil their job[4]. 4. The nature and seriousness of the criminal act committed[5].

Rationes Decidendi
Following the decision from this case, it stated that the employee is liable for the act of its employee if there is a closely connection with employee’s acts in carrying the employer’s business[6]. With this connection, although the acts of the employee are not within the scope of employment which resulting in



References: Lo Surdo, A. (2008) The latest word from the High Court on vicarious liability, LAW SOCIETY JOURNAL, September 45 (8), pp.64-65. Fisher, C. (2008) Are Employers Liable for an Employee’s Criminal Doing? February, accesed: Deatons Pty Limited v Flew (1949) 79 CLR 370, 381 per Dixon J. Starks v RSM Security Pty Limited (2004) Aus Torts Reports 81-768, per Beazly JA. Andrew (2008), Security Guard’s Boss Left with a Fight on His Han, April. Thomas & Liistro (2007), Employer Held Vicariously Liable for Bouncers’ “Bloodlust”. McCracken v Melbourne Storm Rugby League Footbal Club (2005) NSWSC 107. [8] Fisher, C. (2008) Are Employers Liable for an Employee’s Criminal Doing? February, accesed: [9] Deatons Pty Limited v Flew (1949) 79 CLR 370, 381 per Dixon J. [12] Starks v RSM Security Pty Limited (2004) Aus Torts Reports 81-768, per Beazly JA. [13] Andrew (2008), Security Guard’s Boss Left with a Fight on His Han, April. [15] Thomas & Liistro (2007), Employer Held Vicariously Liable for Bouncers’ “Bloodlust”. [16] McCracken v Melbourne Storm Rugby League Footbal Club (2005) NSWSC 107.

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