This section is from the book "The Law Of Contracts", by William Herbert Page. Also available from Amazon: Commercial Contracts: A Practical Guide to Deals, Contracts, Agreements and Promises.
The general manager of a corporation has power to bind the corporation by such contracts as are an appropriate means of carrying on the ordinary business of the corporation.1 Thus the manager of a newspaper may charter a yacht, as a means for obtaining news during war.2 The general manager of a corporation may employ an attorney, where such employment, is a proper means of carrying on the business of the corporation.3 He has no authority to indorse a check given to the corporation,4 nor to borrow money for the corporation,5 nor has he authority to bind the corporation by a bill of sale of the corporate property.6 A manager with general powers cannot bind the corporation by an agreement to pay the hospital bills of one injured through the fault of the corporation.7 The forewoman of a laundry cannot employ a physician for an injured employee,8 nor can a foreman in charge of carpenter work.9 There is some difference of opinion on this question, however. Agents much lower in rank than general manager have been held to have authority to employ medical assistance in emergencies. A conductor may, in the absence of a higher official, employ a physician to render services to an employee injured in the company's business.10 A conductor cannot employ additional surgeons if the first is competent and able to attend to the needs of the injured.11 So one under direction to get the company's surgeon, cannot employ additional physicians.12 Even a general manager cannot employ a physician to attend to an employee injured outside the scope of his employment;13 and a conductor has no authority from the railroad corporation to employ a physician to attend to a trespasser.14
1 Read v. Buffum, 79 Cal. 77; 12 Am. St. Rep. 131; 21 Pac. 555.
2 Magowan v. Groneweg, 14 S. D. 543; 86 N. W. 626.
3 Campbell v. Bank. 67 N. J. L. 301; 91 Am. St. Rep. 438; 51 Atl. 497.
4 Taylor v. Bank, 174 N. Y. 181; 95 Am. St. Rep. 564; 66 N. E. 726.
1 Sun, etc., Association v. Moore, 183 U. S. 642; affirming, 101 Fed. 591; 41 C. C. A. 506; Baird Lumber Co. v. Devlin, 124 Ala. 245; 27 So. 425; Kansas City v. Cullinan, 65 Kan. 68; 68 Pac. 1099; Frost v. Machine Co., 133 Mass. 563.
2 Sun, etc., Association v. Moore, 183 U. S. 642; affirming, 101 Fed. 591; 41 C. C. A. 506.
4 Jackson Paper Co. v. Bank, 199 111. 151; 93 Am. St. Rep. 113; 59 L. R. A. 657; 65 N. E. 136.