Patterson v. Domino’s Pizza, LLCAnnotate this Case
A male supervisor employed by a franchisee allegedly subjected a female subordinate to sexual harassment while working together at the franchisee’s pizza store. Plaintiff, the victim, sued the franchisor, the franchisee, and the harasser, arguing that the franchisor could be held vicariously liable for the harasser’s misconduct. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of the franchisor, concluding that the requisite employment and agency relationship did not exist between the franchisor and franchisee in this case. The court of appeals reversed. The Supreme Court reversed and granted summary judgment in the franchisor’s favor, holding that, under the circumstances of this case, the franchisor did not stand in an employment or agency relationship with the franchisee and its employees for purposes of holding it vicariously liable for workplace injuries allegedly inflicted by the victim's supervisor.