Accidentally Broke My Co-Worker's Hand Horsing Around...
by Maggie (Los Angeles, CA)
At work one day my co-worker came up to me and started play fighting with me. I was on the phone at the time and to get him to knock it off I went to kick his buttocks (jokingly).
As I kicked he put out his hand to block it and I ended up kicking his hand and breaking it. He claims I am liable for his medial bills. Is this true? We were just playing around and he initiated the horse play.
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ANSWER for "Accidentally Broke My Co-Worker's Hand Horsing Around...":
Maggie (Los Angeles, CA):
No! You are certainly not responsible for his injuries. Remember he initiated the "horseplay". He independently and unilaterally took it upon himself to act inappropriately while you were on the telephone. In addition you told him to stop and yet he persisted.
You are not responsible for his injuries. He is solely responsible for what happened to him. He initiated the horseplay and you ended it. Your intention was not to be malicious. Instead you were busy and wanted him to leave you alone.
Don't feel guilty because you may have been trying to be funny and kick him in his buttocks. You wouldn't have had to do so unless he started the entire incident.
If he persists in telling you he wants you to pay, ignoring him would be your best course of action. There is little he can do. If he ever decided to bring the case to court any judge in the world would throw the case out before your coworker uttered his first word.
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