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Country Club Sues Waiter Who Spilled Wine on Handbag

NJ club filed its own suit after woman sued them
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 12, 2019 3:32 AM CST
Updated Nov 16, 2019 7:00 AM CST
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"They did not have to sue their own employee," Errico says. "It basically shows that they really are acting in bad faith.   (Getty Images/IL21)

(Newser) – Almost everyone who has worked as a restaurant server will have a story about a time they spilled something. But not many will be able to say it resulted in two lawsuits. According to a lawsuit filed by Maryana Beyder against the Alpine Country Club in Demarast, NJ, a waiter spilled red wine on her Hermes handbag on Sept. 7 last year, ruining the expensive bag, NorthJersey.com reports. The lawsuit, which says the rare bag was discontinued, making it irreplaceable, seeks $30,000 in damages. Beyder's attorney, Alexandra Errico, says the restaurant denied all the claims in the Oct. 29 lawsuit—and filed its own cross-claim lawsuit against the waiter, who is identified only as "John Doe" in court papers.

Errico tells NJ.com that the lawsuit was only filed after her client spent more than a year trying to resolve the issue with the club and insurance companies. She says while it is reasonable to seek compensation for an item damaged at a restaurant they are not blaming the employee for the accident, and the club is "acting in bad faith" by suing him. Employment attorney Louis Pechman says the waiter should not be liable. He says this kind of legal cross-claim is "unheard of" in such a case. "Good human resources policy would dictate that the restaurant has the employee's back, rather than sticking the knife in his back," Pechman tells NorthJersey.com. (Read more restaurant stories.)

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