Father Sues Karate School
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MATA Martial Arts Instructor Certification Course
Module 21-The Proper Use of Student Instructors
by Scot Conway, Esquire
The $25,000 Volunteers
Excerpt from the Martial Arts Instructor Certification Course:
Using upper ranks to teach classes has been a long-standing martial arts tradition. But, is it legal?
A California instructor had his black belts teaching under-rank classes at his studio. In exchange, he no longer charged them tuition.
This continued until one fateful day when the owner and a black belt student had a disagreement.
The vindictive student contacted the California Labor Board and reported that his instructor had been employing assistants by requiring that they teach classes each week.
This can constitute an Employer – Worker relationship. The only thing missing was payment for the workers and the taxes the government would collect if they were being paid.
The State of California investigators concluded that the owner, over the years, had a total of 25 black belts teach classes.
They defined them as uncompensated employees, which is illegal under the laws of California, and fined the instructor $1,000 per incident.
The final bill: $25,000 for the volunteers.
Lesson: Know your state laws regarding utilizing assistant instructors.
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. – A father alleges his son’s leg was broken in a karate class in Feb. 2018 is suing the school.
A father sued the school and his son’s training partner, alleging they “negligently” caused his son’s injury.
The suit, filed in state Supreme Court, St. George, seeks unspecified monetary damages.
According to a civil complaint, the plaintiff, a resident listed as “K.B.,” was practicing with another student identified only as “D.D.”
The complaint contends the plaintiff asked the other boy to “stop using a karate move,” but D.D. failed to listen to or hear him.
As a result, D.D. fractured the plaintiff’s leg, even though it should have been apparent he was hurting his partner, said the complaint.
The complaint alleges loud music inside the school distracted the defendant, and instructors didn’t supervise the boys properly.
The suit names the corporate name of the school, as a defendant, along with the workout partner through his mother.
The plaintiff seeks unspecified monetary damages.
Read What May and May NOT be Covered by Insurance.
Can Insurance Save You From This?
What Your Must Know About Insurance for a Martial Arts School
How to Reduce Damages in a Lawsuit Defense