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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 87469
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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Is an employee a representative of the company when that company

Resolved Question:

Is an employee a representative of the company when that company uses automated systems to solicitl potential contractees who call back and speak to an employee answering at that call-back number? When the potential contractee relies on that call back number to speak to a company representative and an employee of that company answers and wishes to contract with that respondant, is not that employee a representative of the company?
Are they not a legal agent of the company if by virtue of answering the call at the company's business number and representing the company for purposes of entering into a contract for employment, and are paid by that company to do such? Or are they completely independent and not a legal representative or agent of the company and completely free to say whatever they will without consequence outside of their own personal liability as an individual?

Can company employees be employed by their employers, paid by their employers, and engage in business for their employers -- and not be legal representatives of their employers such that they can legally say and do whatever they wish with no consequences to their employers and only themselves, parading as representatives of their employers?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Hello friend. My name is XXXXX XXXXX welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: (1) this is general information only, not legal advice, and, (2) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies.

I am sorry for your situation. This really depends on what happened - can you please tell me more? Did someone call you? Did you sign up for something? Etc.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I received an automated call from a company I occasionally work with as an Independent Contractor. As per previous emails I had received from this company, I knew the nature of their call was to contract with me as an independent contractor to perform work for them in my local area. I was not able to answer the original call but saw from Caller ID who the call came from. I called that number back and one of their representative's answered, informing me of the job opportunity they wished to contract with me to perform. When I brought up problems with their automated system and pricing for jobs of this sort, they claimed to not represent the company and were completely not responsible for any calls I had received or representations that had been made to me. They claimed they were completely independent and that it was a personal intrusion of their privacy for me to inquire if they were a representative of the company -- yet they were acting on behalf of the company to try to contract with me for hire to complete a job at their request.


 


Was this a representative of the company? Or could any person roam their halls, pick up a phone, call independent contractors through their phone system and hire them to perform jobs for that company, collect a paycheck as that company's employee, and legally claim to not be a legal representative of that company? Is the company not liable for people who use their phone systems this way, paying them to do so, but not really liable as an employer? Is this employee not really an employee but an individual citizen acting on their own behalf but yet still acting to contract on that company's behalf?


 


The employee was seeking to skirt all responsibility for anything they said or did, and to portray the company as not responsible for anything that company communicated to independent contractors in the field. But there was responsibility and likely misrepresentation if the employee was a representative of the company, acted as such, but would not acknowledge their accountability for such.


 


Was the company and/or the employee responsible for their words or actions in attempting to contract with another party?

Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your clarification on this matter. This deals with a doctrine of law called agency.

Agency comes in FOUR TYPES:

ACTUAL - arising out of contact;
APPARENT - where the company intentionally or negligently let the other to believe that you had agency;
INHERENT - by specifically authorizing you; or
RATIFIED - by ratifying your agency after the fact.

In any of these circumstances, the representative acts as an agent for the company and the company is bound to your agreement between you and the agent representative.

Was this a representative of the company?

Arguably, yes. It would be laughable for the company to deny this, seeing as though the representative spoke with clear authority and given the circumstances, any normal person would have seen them as a lawful agent.

Was the company and/or the employee responsible for their words or actions in attempting to contract with another party?

Arguably, the company was responsible for the representative's verbiage, and can be held accountable for any work ordered/done by you that was ordered by the agent representative.

I hope this helps and clarifies. Best of luck.

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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 87469
Experience: Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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