Nordman v Calhoun – 17.10

Nordman v Calhoun
Digest no. 17.10

Section 42

Cite as: Nordman v Calhoun, 332 Mich 460 (1952).

Appeal pending: No
Claimant: Ardath Calhoun
Employer: Charles E. Nordman d/b/a Top Notch Soda Bar
Docket no.: BO 2905 12445
Date of decision: March 6, 1952

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SUPREME COURT HOLDING: Mr. Date Scofield was an employee under the Section 42 definition of employment – service performed for remuneration or under an oral or written contract for hire.

FACTS: Mr. Scofield, a retired postal employee provided janitorial services to employer’s predecessor for $10/week. When the employer took over, Mr. Scofield continued performing the same duties at the same salary. Employer required him to finish his work by 10 a.m. when the business was open. He worked 6 days/week for approximately 1.5 hours each day.

Mr. Scofield also worked at a hardware store 2-3 times/year installing and removing screens and storm windows, and he also performed similar jobs for others. For such work he charged by the hour. Mr. Scofield could quit at any time. Employer laid him off in October, 1949.

DECISION: Mr. Scofield was an employee pursuant to Section 42. As a result of that finding, the employer was determined to be a liable employer under the then applicable criteria in the Act. Consequently the claimant, Ms. Calhoun, was able to pursue her claim for benefits against the employer.

RATIONALE: “The only issue in the case at bar is to determine whether Date Scofield was an employee or an independent contractor. In the case at bar Date Scofield was hired for an indefinite period and could have severed his employment at any time. Moreover, his employer could have discharged him at any time, with or without cause. The fact that the employer did not find it necessary to exercise any detailed supervision over the performance of the employee’s duties is not determinative of the employer-employee relationship, nor does the fact that Date Scofield was a part-time employee bring him within the exception found in the act. In view of the fact that the services performed by Date Scofield are undisputed, we hold as a matter of law that he was an employee… .”

Digest Author: Board of Review (original digest here)
Digest Updated: 
12/91