IMMUNITY - ALABAMA MUNICIPAL INS. CORP. V. ALLEN
Alabama Municipal Ins. Corp. v. Allen, [Ms. 1121006, Sept. 26, 2014] __ So. 3d __ (Ala. 2014). The Court holds that a police officer driving to work in the patrol car assigned to him was not within the scope of the $100,000 statutory cap of ¤ 11-47-190 for municipalities. The police officer was sued in his individual capacity and the circuit court entered judgments against him for the two plaintiffs in the amount of $700,000 and $1,100,000. The Court reaffirms its recent holding in Morrow v. Caldwell, [Ms. 1111359, Mar. 14, 2014] __ So. 3d __ (Ala. 2014), and rejects the arguments by the City of Madison and its insurer. "The City opted to have its police officers' vehicles insured for activities outside the officers' employment, and AMIC accepted premiums for such coverage and has admitted that [the defendant officer] was an insured under its policy with the City." Justice Murdock concurs in the rationale in part and concurs in the result, questioning the majority opinion's comments "that 'the legislature is better suited to speak comprehensively on the individual liability of municipal employees.'" Justice Murdock notes that "where the employee is not considered a State agent and has breached some individual duty owed by him or her to a third party, provisions of the Alabama constitution appear to present an obstacle to a legislative prescription of limits on individual liability."