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Home / Opinions / Courts / Court of Appeals, Western District / Negligence : Co-Employee Liability – Duty – Work Comp Exclusivity

Negligence : Co-Employee Liability – Duty – Work Comp Exclusivity

Where the family of a truck driver who was killed in a single-vehicle accident sued the driver’s three supervisors for wrongful death, the duties that the plaintiffs claimed that the defendants owed to the driver were part of their employer’s nondelegable duty to provide a safe workplace, and the plaintiffs did not allege that the defendants owed a duty that was separate and distinct from that of the employer, so summary judgment for the defendants is affirmed.



Concurring opinion by Fischer, J.: “I concur with the result reached in the principal opinion, but would overrule the court of appeals’ decision in Leeper v. Asmus, 440 S.W.3d 478 (Mo. App. 2014), beyond the principal opinion’s limited overruling of that case and would continue to apply the “something more” test consistent with its well-established meaning in this Court.


Common law test

Concurring opinion by Wilson, J.: “I concur in the result reached in the majority opinion, but am dubitante as to the discussion of the common-law test for co-employee liability for the reasons stated in my separate opinion in Peters v. Wady Industries Inc., No. SC94442 (Mo. banc 2016) (Wilson, J., concurring), also decided today.”



Dissenting opinion by Teitelman, J.; “This case is governed by common law principles and, as explained in Leeper, summary judgment was not proper because the existence of a duty depends on disputed facts that should not have been resolved by summary judgment. I would reverse the summary judgment and remand the case for further proceedings.”

Judgment is affirmed.

Parr v. Breeden (MLW No. 69273/Case No. SC94393 – 20 pages) (Supreme Court of Missouri, Breckenridge, J.; Stith, Draper and Russell, JJ., concur; Fischer, J., concurs in result in separate opinion filed; Wilson, J., concurs in result in separate opinion filed; Teitelman, J., dissents in separate opinion filed) Appealed from circuit court, New Madrid County, Copeland, J. (Shaun D. Hanschen and Rachel R. Harris, Sikeston, for appellants) (Michael S. Hamlin and Robyn Greifzu Fox, St. Louis, and Ted L. Perryman, John Schaberg and Josh S. Owings, St. Louis, for respondents).

Read the full text of this opinion. (PDF)