Friday, May 1, 2020

Caddie sued - seeking more than $30,000 in damages,


Insurance is all about exposure, the probability of peril occurrence, the extent of loss or damage it can cause,  requirement of an individual or entity … Imagine a new showroom being opened – there would be need for insuring the property inside, the furniture, fixtures, electrical installations, the building itself, personal insurances for the staff and visitors, liability insurance ! and more - I never imagined of this type of claim  ! atleast in India.

We are fond of Cricket, follow to some extent other sports like – Kabaddi, Hockey, Tennis, Football, Badminton, Table tennis, Racing, Carrom and …. …. Can you identify this woman who is ranked no. 1 presently ?

Golf is a club-and-ball sport in which players use various clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a course in as few strokes as possible. Golf, unlike most ball games,  does not utilize a standardized playing area, and coping with the varied terrains encountered on different courses is a key part of the game. The game at the usual level is played on a course with an arranged progression of 18 holes, though recreational courses can be smaller, often having nine holes.  Besides the player, there is Caddie – a helper  who carries a player's bag and clubs, and gives insightful advice too !

Other than Motor vehicles insurance, Property and Marine Insurance, there is Liability insurance – that branch which protects an individual or business from the risk that they may be sued and held legally liable for something such as malpractice, injury or negligence. Liability insurance policies cover both legal costs and any legal payouts for which the insured would be responsible if found legally liable. Intentional damage and contractual liabilities are typically not covered in these types of policies.

‘liability’ (n) is  one of the most significant words in the field of law, and a complex subject in Insurance. Liability means legal responsibility for one's acts or omissions. Any loss or damage caused by a negligent act of a person / Firm exposes them to public liability and cost of litigation as also the cost of such liability suit will be covered in a liability insurance policy. 

One common example is the Act Policy [Third Party Liability policy] in Motor vehicle Insurance.  In India, as prescribed in the Motor Vehicles Act, every vehicle owner must have a policy covering the liability that might arise out of the use of the motor vehicle in a public place. Employers liability, also known as Workmen Compensation is another where the Employer has liability to their employees for death / injuries ‘arising out of and in the course of employment’.

The  liability related suits, other than those of motor accident victims  are not very high in India and there have not been many complex situations also as compared to some litigant practices in Western countries.  Read this interesting news of a liability suit in MailOnline.  A Florida man has filed a lawsuit against Tiger Woods and his caddie Joe LaCava alleging he sustained injuries after LaCava shoved him when he tried to take a selfie with the golfer in the background at a tournament in 2018.

According to the civil complaint, which was filed in Pinellas County, Florida, Brian Borruso alleges the incident took place during the third round of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook after Woods's tee shot landed near him. Borruso, who is seeking more than $30,000 (Rs 23 lakhs approx.) in damages, says he stumbled and fell into the crowd of spectators after being shoved by LaCava, ultimately causing injuries he described in the lawsuit as 'permanent or continuing.'

Tiger Woods, who was competing in only his fourth PGA Tour event after a long layoff following spinal fusion surgery in April 2017, was named as a defendant because he employs Joe LaCava (left), who last year was inducted into the Caddie Hall of Fame.

'Brian Borruso suffered injury and damages including, but not limited to, bodily and mental injury, and resulting pain and suffering, disability, disfigurement, mental anguish, loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life, expenses of hospitalization, medical and nursing care and treatment, loss of ability to earn income, and aggravation of previously existing condition,' read the filing, obtained by the Daily Mail. 'The losses are either permanent or continuing.'  There is some video of the moments leading up to Borruso being shoved, although the plaintiff is not visible in the footage.  LaCava can be heard telling fans to 'back it up' and is seen extending his arm as if to shield Woods from spectators during his practice swings. 

That video does not show any contact between LaCava and anyone else, but another clip purportedly from the same moment and place includes two male voices commenting on LaCava shoving someone.  'He just pushed him,' said one voice as others can be heard laughing in the background. 'He just shoved him right out of there," another voice can be heard saying.   Both the agent and spokesman for 15-times major champion Woods did not immediately respond to Reuters when asked to comment. LaCava could not be reached for comment.

The lawsuit says United States Golf Association rules state golfers are responsible for their caddie's actions during a round and that Woods 'failed in his duty as he freely allowed' LaCava to negligently use force.

Interesting ! ~ and some thoughts of that incident when a popular actor got wild and broke the cell phone of a fan who was trying to take a selfie !

The woman pictured at the start is - Ko Jin-young, a South Korean professional golfer who plays on the LPGA Tour.  She has won  10 times on the LPGA of Korea Tour, was second at the 2015 Ricoh Women’s British Open, and had won the 2017 LPGA KEB Hana Bank Championship. In  2018, she was named the LPGA Rookie of the Year, and completed the 2018 season as the 10th-ranked female player in the world.  In 2019, she won her first two LPGA major championships at the ANA Inspiration and the Evian Championship. Ko completed the 2019 season with the official money title ($2,773,894) and the Vare Trophy for the lowest scoring average (69.06), and was named LPGA Player of the Year.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
11.4.2020.


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