Ko v. Maxim Healthcare Services

Extension of Dillon v. Legg  NIED to Accommodate Technology.


Parents of two-year-old child with severe disabilities filed suit against in-home caregiver and caregiver’s employer, asserting causes of action negligent infliction of emotional distress (NIED) and related claims, after they observed caregiver assaulting child in real time on cell phone from live stream video recorded on “nanny cam.” The trial court granted Defendants’ demurrer to the Plaintiff’s cause of action for NIED because the parents were not physically “present” at time of injury.


Reversed. The Court of Appeal held that a family’s real time, virtual presence through a live stream nanny cam was sufficient to satisfy the requirement of contemporaneous sensory awareness of an injury-producing event, required for NIED causes of action.