negligent supervision

What is Negligent Supervision

Negligent Supervision By An Employer

Negligent supervision is a direct liability that arises when an employer fails to manage and monitor its employees adequately and someone is harmed. Without proper supervision, employees can engage in dangerous, harmful, or offensive conduct that affects others and even injures them. Let’s dive deeper into what negligent supervision is and what some examples and legal remedies are.

Negligent supervision occurs when an employer doesn’t take the right measures to oversee employees and protect other employees, customers, and members of the public from harm. Without proper supervision, employees can engage in conduct that harms others. For example, there can be discrimination among employees, but without supervision, no steps can be taken to fix the problem. Negligent supervision could also lead to workplace accidents. No one can correct employees when they are doing their jobs incorrectly without anyone looking over employee activities. This can lead to serious injuries in higher-risk work environments, such as manufacturing plants and construction sites. 

Negligent supervision imposes direct accountability on employers for failing to exercise the necessary prudence in managing and overseeing their workforce effectively. Employees or others harmed because of negligent supervision have the right to ask for legal remedies, which we’ll discuss more below.

Key Elements of Negligent Supervision

There are three main elements that you and your lawyer have to take into account when dealing with a negligent supervision case. These three aspects will be crucial in proving your claim.

Duty of Care

Legally speaking, employers have to supervise their employees properly. A large part of this duty of care is monitoring and addressing issues as they arise. From a practical perspective, this duty makes sense because employer policies and processes directly affect people’s conduct and safety. 

Breach of Duty

This element encapsulates the essence of negligence, highlighting instances where the employer falls short of fulfilling its legal obligation to monitor and manage employees properly. Breach of duty manifests in different ways. It can encompass negligence in addressing workplace issues, overlooking misconduct allegations, or failing to create a safe environment for employees to thrive. Because these types of misconduct can cause real physical and emotional harm, employees are protected by the law and are entitled to compensation from the employer if their claim is successful.


Establishing a direct link between your injuries or damages and the employer’s negligence can be tricky, but it is essential for your case. Your lawyer needs to prove that the employer’s actions, or lack thereof, directly resulted in the harm you experienced.

Proving an employer was negligent requires clear evidence that they could stop an issue before it got out of hand, but they didn’t. A good piece of evidence for this would be, for example, a filed complaint that was ignored. Another helpful asset would be a witness who verifies that the employer didn’t intend to improve workplace supervision.

Examples of Negligent Supervision

Here are some common situations that may be examples of negligent supervision.

Sexual Harassment Culture

Employers who fail to address and prevent instances of sexual harassment in the workplace can be held liable for negligent supervision. When harassment is tolerated, it creates a hostile work environment, potentially leading to emotional distress, personal injury, or loss of employment for the victim. In many cases, employers are the ones allowing this toxic work culture to exist.

Trucking Company Falsifying Records

Because commercial trucks can cause serious accidents, truck drivers are required to take breaks after a certain number of hours at the wheel and log their driving hours. Trucking companies that knowingly allow truckers to falsify their driving logs exhibit negligence in their supervision. This can lead to accidents, injuries, and legal consequences, with the company facing liability for its lack of oversight. This is often what happens when companies put profits and deadlines over the well-being of their employees.

Intoxicated Construction Workers

Some contractors have been known to permit intoxicated construction workers to operate heavy machinery, demonstrating a serious lapse in supervision. This negligence can result in accidents, injuries, and property damage. This is another instance of putting work performance over safety.

Nursing Homes Negligence

Nursing homes that do not ensure staff members properly administer medication to residents may be held responsible. Negligent supervision in this context can lead to severe health complications for residents and legal actions against the facility.

Daycare Centers Neglecting Children

Daycare centers that tolerate neglect of children under their care exhibit negligence in supervision. Daycare centers especially need very strict supervision because small children can’t defend themselves or report negligence, which can make it easier for unscrupulous caregivers to not fulfill their obligations. 

Legal Remedies for Negligent Supervision

When negligent supervision leads to harm or injuries, there are legal remedies available to anyone who was affected, including employees and other third parties:

  • Monetary damages: People who have suffered due to negligent supervision may seek monetary damages to compensate for medical expenses, emotional distress, property damage, and other related costs.
  • Reinstatement: In cases of wrongful termination resulting from negligent supervision, plaintiffs may seek reinstatement to their previous position, along with payment for their missed salary.
  • Termination of negligent party: Employers can take action to terminate the employee responsible for negligent actions or inactions. This can happen when managers don’t fulfill their duty to effectively monitor the workplace while misinforming the business owners about what’s happening in the workplace. 
  • Policy revisions: In situations where negligence is widespread within a company, courts may mandate revisions to employment policies, handbooks, and procedures to prevent future incidents. Usually, the company’s whole training program gets re-evaluated, and additional staff can be employed to serve as supervisors.

Get Fair Compensation

If you were injured or suffered losses because of an employer’s negligent supervision, you have rights. Morris & Dewett Injury Lawyers can evaluate your case and help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Schedule a consultation with us today.

Morris & Dewett provides this information to the public for general education and interest. The firm does not represent clients in every topic discussed in answers to frequent questions. The information is curated and produced based on questions commonly asked or search terms commonly used. Every effort is made to provide accurate information. Do not make any decision solely based on the information provided, please seek relevant counsel for each topic area. Consult an attorney before making any legal decision, consult a doctor before making any medical decision, and consult a financial advisor before making any fiscal decision. Information provided is not legal advice. If you have any legal needs, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are pleased to assist you.

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