Blog

 
     

Texas Provides Limited Liability in Negligent Hiring Cases

By Michael Klazema on 8/14/2013

Texas Governor Rick Perry signed House Bill 1188 on June 14, 2013, limiting the liability of people who employ convicts. The bill adds Chapter 142 to Title 6 of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code. The new law took effect immediately.

The new chapter generally prohibits (with important exceptions) any civil action against an employer solely for hiring or failing to adequately supervise an employee based on evidence of the employee’s criminal conviction. The protections provided under the law extend to general contractors, premises owners, or other third parties.

However, an employer may be liable for negligent hiring if it knew or should have known of the conviction, and the employee was convicted of certain crimes. The crimes listed in the law are:

  1. An offense committed while performing duties substantially similar to those reasonably expected to be performed in the employment, or under conditions substantially similar to those reasonably expected to be encountered in the employment;
  2. The following offenses listed in Section 3g, Article 42.12 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure: murder, capital murder, indecency with a child, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated sexual assault, aggravated robbery, sexual assault, injury to a child, elderly individual, or disabled individual, sexual performance by a child, compelling prostitution, trafficking of persons, a first degree felony offense, the use of a child in the commission of a crime, and a drug-related offense committed in or within 1000 feet of schools, playgrounds, youth centers,  swimming pools, or video arcade facilities; or
  3. A sexually violent offense.

A negligent hiring or negligent supervision claim may also be filed against an employer for claims concerning the misuse of funds or property under some circumstances. To file a claim in this instance, the job must involve discharging a fiduciary responsibility in the management of funds or property, or the crime includes “fraud or the misuse of funds or property.”

As a result of this legislation, some employers will take comfort in knowing they will not be held liable for hiring individuals with criminal histories. A criminal background check will be useful to determine if an applicant or employee has a conviction of one or more of the crimes listed in the bill.

The full text of House Bill 1188 is available at: http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/83R/billtext/pdf/HB01188F.pdf#navpanes=0


Tag Cloud
Categories
Recent Posts

Latest News

  • May 18 In search of more personnel and considering normalization, some major employers have elected to drop pre-employment drug screens for marijuana. As the opioid epidemic continues, there is still a role for workplace drug tests.
  • May 15

    A Congressional IT contractor who is facing bank fraud, a class-action lawsuit, and allegations of cyber breach never underwent a background check. Congressional guidelines recommend background screenings but have a loophole that makes it possible to skip them.


  • May 10 Are SSN background checks essential, or even necessary? We look at what Social Security Number data can and cannot do in the background check process.
  • May 10

    In the wake of an attack in which the perpetrator used a rental vehicle to strike pedestrians, and with a growing number of such attacks around the world in recent years, rental companies must consider how to address the issue. Effective security measures have proven difficult to implement.


  • May 08 Some statistics suggest employers aren’t running international background checks. In a job market where foreign candidates are increasingly common, this oversight can be dangerous.
  • May 03

    Despite player numbers in the millions, the primary sanctioning body for youth soccer in the United States established no standard policy requiring background checks. They face legal jeopardy due to the actions of abusive coaches. 


  • May 03 Are you applying for a job with Starbucks? Here’s what to expect from the background check process.
  • May 02 — Further restrictions have been placed on employers that inquire about prior criminal records. Timeframes have been adjusted and asking about expunged records is prohibited. 
  • May 01 Uber is expanding its background check policies. Going forward, the company will incorporate repeat background checks and ongoing criminal monitoring into its driver screening processes.
  • April 28 Airport background checks are governed by the TSA and FAA. They typically include employment history checks, criminal history searches, and a few other elements.