fellow-servant rule

Also found in: Legal.

fel′low-serv′ant rule`

the common-law rule that the employer is not liable to an employee for injuries resulting from the negligence of a fellow employee (fel′low serv′ant).
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Thus it was the principle of voluntary assumption of risk which became the lynchpin of the common law of employers' liability, the fellow-servant rule being one application of it.
Examining more than 70 different rules, ranging from courts permitting contingency-fee contracts to resisting the adoption of the fellow-servant rule, Karsten identifies 29 rules that constituted judicial innovation, but surprisingly, these innovations overwhelmingly favored plaintiffs and the poor, rather than corporations.
The "true revolutionaries" in the antebellum law, of industrial accidents "were not the judges who defined the fellow-servant rule, but the plaintiffs who sought to press the new claim" (p.
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