Respondeat Superior Definition

(ruh-spon-dee-at soo-peer-ee-or) Latin for "let the master answer." A legal rule that holds an employer or principal legally responsible for the acts of its employees or agents committed within the scope of their employment.

When a court applies respondeat superior, the employer isn't being held responsible for its own wrongful conduct. Instead, the employer is being held vicariously liable for the wrongdoing of an employee or agent.