Humble Oil v. Martin

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Humble Oil v. Martin
Date decided


Mrs. Love, a customer of the gas station, forgot to put her parking brake on when she stopped at the station. The car rolled and hit Mr. Martin and his two daughters.

Procedural History

Trial Ct. and Appellate ct. found Humble and Love liable.


Is Humble guilty for the negligent acts of the gas station operator?


Humble's defense was that the operator of the gas station, Mr. Schneider, was an independent contractor, so they are not liable for his actions.


Humble is liable




All evidence indicated that the relationship between Humble and Schneider was an employer-employee rather that franchisee. Schneider was told what and how to do his job. Humble was to pay ¾ of the utility bills of the station. Humble dictated the hours of operation. Schneider had to write reports to Humble.


K included phrase: "to make reports and perform other duties in connection with the operation of said station that may be required of him from time to time by Company."