Friday, April 20, 2012

Key Missouri Agency Citations/Second Ten


#11. City of Springfield v. Koch, 228 Mo.App. 511, 72 S.W.2d 191 (1934), in which Edgar, brother of appellant Victor Koch, had over a period of years, with the knowledge and consent of Victor, signed Victor's name to surety bonds similar to the one in issue. Victor took no steps to prevent it nor to give notice such acts were unauthorized. In holding that Edgar had implied authority to bind Victor, the court held authority to do a given thing may be inferred from the agent's previous conduct of like character with the principal's acquiescence therein.

#12. Wynn v. McMahon Ford Co.,414 S.W.2d 330 (Mo.App.1967), in which defendant automobile dealership gave an employee the title of used car sales manager. It was held a third person dealing with him could reasonably believe he had authority to conclude a sales contract for a boat on plaintiff's used car lot.

#13. Newco Land Co. v. Martin, 358 Mo. 99, 213 S.W.2d 504, 511 (Mo.1948):

It is well settled that the principal is chargeable with notice or knowledge received by his agent while acting within the scope of his authority concerning a matter within the scope of the agency. Restatement, Agency, Sec. 268, 2 Am. Jur. 286, Sec. 368; 3 C.J.S. 194, Sec. 262. There is an exception to this rule when the agent is acting adversely to the principal and entirely for his own or another's purpose. Restatement, Agency, Secs. 279, 282; 2 Am. Jur. 298, Sec. 379. But the stated exception is itself subject to an exception or qualification, which qualification, supported by the greater weight of authority, is to the effect that where the principal asserts or stands on the transaction either affirmatively or defensively, he is deprived of the benefit of the exception where the agent is his sole representative in the transaction, in which case the agents knowledge is imputed to the principal. Restatement, Agency, Sec. 282; 2 Am. Jur. 300, Sec. 380; 3 C.J.S. 202, Secs. 269, 270, and authorities infra.

#14.  E.g., Maniaci v. Interurban Express Co., 182 S.W. 981, 985  (Mo. 1916) writing that rationale of respondeat superior is implied in fact warranty by principal that agent is competent and fitted to be trusted.  "In effect … he [the principal] warrants … [the agents] fidelity and good conduct in all matters within the scope of his agency."

See also State ex rel. Matter v. Ogden,  172 S.W. 1172, 174 (1915) (citing Blackstone that one who provides services warrants he will  perform his duty with integrity, diligence, and skill).

#15. Clark's Adm'x v. Hannibal  & St. Joseph R.R. Co., 36 Mo. 202, 218 (1865), basing the rationale for respondeat superior upon the concept concept  that  benefits  and  liabilities  should  be reciprocal,  and  thus  that  those  who  hope  to  profit from  an  activity must  also  bear  its  costs.

#16. Coble v. Economy Forms Corp., 304 S.W.2d 47, 52 (Mo.App. 1957):

[O]ne of the reasons for the existence of the doctrine of respondeat superior lies in this power of the master to exercise detailed control over the manner in which the work is done.

See generally David Jacks Achtenberg, Taking History Seriously: Municipal LiabilityUnder 42 U.S.C. § 1983 and the Debate Over Respondeat Superior, 73 Fordham Law Review 2183, 2199-2000 (2005).

#17. Baker v. Aetna Casualty & Surety Co., 193 S.W.2d 363, 369 (Mo. App. 1946) approved use of a cautionary insurance on implied authority reading:

Instruction No. 2 told the jury that whenever a person has held out another as his agent authorized to act for him in a given capacity, or where his habits and course of dealing have been such as to reasonably warrant the presumption that such other was his agent authorized to act in that capacity, whether it be in a single transaction or in a series of transactions, his authority to such other to act for him in that capacity may be presumed, and the principal will not be permitted to deny that such other was his agent authorized to do the act that he assumed to do, provided that act was within the real or apparent scope of the presumed authority.

#18. J.M. v. Shell Oil Co., 922 S.W.2d 759, 764 (Mo.banc 1996) (holding that when a contract appears to be contradictory, a factual question arises as to whether the right of control exists, thereby making summary judgment inappropriate).

#19.Berthhold & Jennings Lumber Co., 209 S.W. 591, 595 (Mo. App. 1919):
one dealing with general manager "need not show affirmatively that the company had authorized such action before the company can be liable for the acts."
#20. Hamilton Hauling, Inc. v. GAF Corp., 719 S.W.2d 841, 846 (Mo.App.1986):

The "holding out" of the agent's authority by the principal party may be by action or inaction. The principal may directly communicate the authority to a third party or knowingly permit the agent to exercise such authority. See Continental-St. Louis Corp. v. Ray Scharf Vending Co., 400 S.W.2d 467, 470 (Mo.App.1966). The Continental-St. Louis Corp. court quotes 3 AM.JUR.2d Agency § 74 (now § 79) as saying:
[T]he rule is that if a principal acts or conducts his business, either intentionally or through negligence, or fails to disapprove of the agent's act or course of action so as to lead the public to believe that his agent possesses authority to act or contract in the name of the principal, such principal is bound by the acts of the agent within the scope of his apparent authority as to any person who, upon the faith of such holding out, believes, and has reasonable ground to believe, that the agent has such authority, and in good faith deals with him.
Id.

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