Should employer pay for personal equipment damaged at work?



  • josie
    josie Posts: 3,106 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post First Anniversary
    Variation on a theme, but we've just been given new smart phones at work without a case. We've ordered our own cases from Amazon for that particular make and model of phone (claimed back cost from work). They've turned out to be not very good and the corner broke off mine. On dropping it on the floor at work, it fell out of the case and has cracked the screen.

    We've now been told when enquiring, that any damage has to be paid for personally! Is that right and why don't they provide proper cases - grr!
  • Talent
    Talent Posts: 244 Forumite
    Personal stuff needs personal insurance. Yeh but.... etc, there's no harm in trying, or trying it on, even! Good luck.
  • Setting aside the question of whether the valuable item should have been in the school, whether it was left in an appropriate place etc. for a moment, the short answer is yes, there's probably a valid insured claim.
    The school will have liability cover and if the technician is a contractor, then their employer or they themselves will have insurance.
    If it's a genuine accident, it's a valid claim.
    As for those of you suggesting that the student must be rich to have a Mac Book, shame on you. You have no idea how it was bought - perhaps it was saved for for a long time, or a gift. It's irrelevant to the question being asked.
  • Isn't it the case that if person A damages goods belonging to person B, whether by accident or design and regardless of where it happens, then person A is liable for the damage? There might be an element of contributary negligence if person B was careless with the goods, but otherwise person A (or his insurers, if he has them) should pay up.

    I can't see why person B (or his insurers) should have to pay out for someone else's carelessness.

    The income of either party is irrelevant.
  • I don't think the school should pay for insurance to cover that so it's the technician or nobody paying for the repair in my opinion.
    However try taking it to an apple store and see what they say. You never know but customer service may be a reason apple products cost a million pounds...
  • I agree with most of the other forum members that this really something that should be covered by his own home insurance policy, but I also know that 'away from home' cover is frequently offered as an extra that many people don't take, but that's value judgement. My wife's school suffers from the reverse problem - they provide all students with laptops at no cost and these are treated with contempt. Because the school's policy is always to replace broken equipment without question or penalty it's costing them a fortune in insurance.
  • You've mentioned it twice so could you tell me what is a PGCE?
    The technician who works for the school should have insurance for accidents or be covered by the schools policy.If they both give you the runaround then contact your union who will help to resolve all this(hopefully).The school could tell you that bringing your own personel items into school are not covered and could even be on your contract of employment.
    I think the most likely outcome is that your going to have to claim on your own ins.,just say it was knocked out of your hand in a crowd out shopping.
  • antrobus
    antrobus Posts: 17,386 Forumite
    stork wrote: »
    This article sums it up quite nicely.

    There is no general stand-alone liability on an employer just because a loss occurs at the workplace. There is, however, a general liability for 'wrongful acts committed by their employees carried out in the course of employment'. Whilst this probably wouldn't include theft or malicious damage by an employee, it would include an accident caused by their negligence.

    Exactly. If we take it as given that the technician was an employee, you would have to demonstrate that (a) the technician did indeed commit a "wrongful act", and that (b) they did so in the "course of their employment".

    However the OP simply states that the technician "knocked over his brand new MacBook Pro and cracked the screen". We are told nothing about how this came about, so we cannot say whether or not the technician was at fault, or whether or not he was actually 'working' when he did so.
  • Surely they should have an insurance policy in place. You can always ask and see what happens. Even if they don't they may pay as a good will gesture.
  • You've mentioned it twice so could you tell me what is a PGCE?
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