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Do you know who you are hiring when you take on a new employee? Your answer might be, "No, and besides, what I don't know can't hurt me." But there is an emerging trend in the law known as "negligent hiring," which says that a lack of knowledge about your employees can indeed hurt you — and hurt but good. The concept of negligent hiring is a modified and expanded version of the doctrine of respondeat superior. That concept says an employer can be held liable for wrongful or negligent actions of an employee if that worker was acting within the course of the employment relationship when the wrongful or negligent act was performed. A common example is where an employee