A franchisor cannot be held liable for the alleged negligence of a franchisee merely because they have a relationship, a Suffolk County, N.Y., judge has ruled in dismissing a claim against 7-Eleven lodged by a customer splashed with hot coffee.

Supreme Court Justice Robert W. Doyle granted summary judgment dismissing a suit against the company by Eugene Nickola, who alleges he was injured during an altercation between another customer and an employee of a Greenport 7-Eleven.