Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Ineedadviceman101
    • By Ineedadviceman101 9th Nov 18, 11:46 PM
    • 2Posts
    • 1Thanks
    Ineedadviceman101
    Client threatening to sue me for 'damages' caused during work
    • #1
    • 9th Nov 18, 11:46 PM
    Client threatening to sue me for 'damages' caused during work 9th Nov 18 at 11:46 PM
    Initial post removed for confidentiality reasons.

    Many thanks to those who have responded and offered great advice.
    Last edited by Ineedadviceman101; 11-11-2018 at 1:11 AM. Reason: Confidentiality
Page 1
    • Manxman in exile
    • By Manxman in exile 9th Nov 18, 11:54 PM
    • 1,638 Posts
    • 1,274 Thanks
    Manxman in exile
    • #2
    • 9th Nov 18, 11:54 PM
    • #2
    • 9th Nov 18, 11:54 PM
    You could try asking a proper locksmith what would be a reasonable quote for this kind of thing.


    I know my MiL had a UPVC door and the locking mechanism was really complicated.


    Didn't your (ex) client seek a quote for the work the other guy did? I certainly would have!


    It's not clear to me that you have any liability - but I may be wholly wrong.
    • photome
    • By photome 10th Nov 18, 7:38 AM
    • 13,658 Posts
    • 9,178 Thanks
    photome
    • #3
    • 10th Nov 18, 7:38 AM
    • #3
    • 10th Nov 18, 7:38 AM
    can you claim on your insurance


    IMO you are liable but the customer had a duty to keep the costs reasonable, they may have been able to get a new door fitted for less than that
    • neilmcl
    • By neilmcl 10th Nov 18, 9:26 AM
    • 12,138 Posts
    • 8,919 Thanks
    neilmcl
    • #4
    • 10th Nov 18, 9:26 AM
    • #4
    • 10th Nov 18, 9:26 AM
    Do you not have PI Insurance?
    • scd3scd4
    • By scd3scd4 10th Nov 18, 9:39 AM
    • 1,011 Posts
    • 892 Thanks
    scd3scd4
    • #5
    • 10th Nov 18, 9:39 AM
    • #5
    • 10th Nov 18, 9:39 AM
    I don't think my new composite door cost much more with fitting.
    • bris
    • By bris 10th Nov 18, 11:04 AM
    • 8,163 Posts
    • 7,122 Thanks
    bris
    • #6
    • 10th Nov 18, 11:04 AM
    • #6
    • 10th Nov 18, 11:04 AM
    UPVC doors, I fix them all the time.


    Part Between 40-120, labour between 1 and 4 hours.


    Your customer got ripped off by a rogue locksmith, you hear about these con men all the time.


    The customer needed to shop about but instead paid way way over the odds. The courts know this.


    Even if he did have a case he failed to mitigate the loss. Given the fact it was already a faulty door he doesn't have much of a case in the first place.


    Your defence is simple, the problem was not in your area of expertise so you recommended a specialist in these doors. It no longer your problem.
    • Les79
    • By Les79 10th Nov 18, 12:05 PM
    • 682 Posts
    • 751 Thanks
    Les79
    • #7
    • 10th Nov 18, 12:05 PM
    • #7
    • 10th Nov 18, 12:05 PM

    Even if he did have a case he failed to mitigate the loss. Given the fact it was already a faulty door he doesn't have much of a case in the first place.


    Your defence is simple, the problem was not in your area of expertise so you recommended a specialist in these doors. It no longer your problem.
    Originally posted by bris


    Agree with you on the mitigation of loss point.


    But not entirely convinced that it is a simple defence here... The problem was "during a routine lock change on a door, (old plastic door) a lock became lodged in the door as something may have slipped in the mechanism" - so it has come about due to the work carried out by OP. There seems to be a missing step of determining that an inherent fault already existed to absolve OP from responsibility (And/or the reason why OP didn't notice beforehand and refuse to carry out work on it)


    I'm no expert mind you, so would suggest to OP that they go and get some proper advice because, depending on the specifics, liability could or could not be with OP here.
    Last edited by Les79; 10-11-2018 at 12:13 PM.
    • photome
    • By photome 10th Nov 18, 12:06 PM
    • 13,658 Posts
    • 9,178 Thanks
    photome
    • #8
    • 10th Nov 18, 12:06 PM
    • #8
    • 10th Nov 18, 12:06 PM
    UPVC doors, I fix them all the time.


    Part Between 40-120, labour between 1 and 4 hours.


    Your customer got ripped off by a rogue locksmith, you hear about these con men all the time.


    The customer needed to shop about but instead paid way way over the odds. The courts know this.


    Even if he did have a case he failed to mitigate the loss. Given the fact it was already a faulty door he doesn't have much of a case in the first place.


    Your defence is simple, the problem was not in your area of expertise so you recommended a specialist in these doors. It no longer your problem.
    Originally posted by bris

    why was he doing the job in the first place then


    he should have told the customer that and not started the job
    • scd3scd4
    • By scd3scd4 10th Nov 18, 12:19 PM
    • 1,011 Posts
    • 892 Thanks
    scd3scd4
    • #9
    • 10th Nov 18, 12:19 PM
    • #9
    • 10th Nov 18, 12:19 PM
    Have you a copy of the invoice to show work, parts and labour?
    • shaun from Africa
    • By shaun from Africa 10th Nov 18, 12:25 PM
    • 10,462 Posts
    • 11,803 Thanks
    shaun from Africa
    Your defence is simple, the problem was not in your area of expertise so you recommended a specialist in these doors. It no longer your problem.
    Originally posted by bris
    Are you saying that any self employed person could start a job, then when that job went wrong, simply walk away with the excuse "Not my area of expertise mate, best you get a professional in to fix what I have done"?

    What the OP should have done is to arrange (and pay for) a specialist to complete the job that they had started.
    • askmeaboutsofas
    • By askmeaboutsofas 10th Nov 18, 12:48 PM
    • 103 Posts
    • 74 Thanks
    askmeaboutsofas
    800? Is the PVC repair guy a friend of theirs? Have they shown you a copy of the receipt? Has the door even been repaired, or are they just telling you that you owe them 800? Somebody is being ripped off here, before you get stuck into it try to find out whether it's you or your customer that's the victim.

    If you have insurance, let them deal with it.
    If you don't, you really need insurance! Talk to a few other local businesses who do specialise in PVC doors, and get a price from them for the job. Then inform the customer that you'll pay them that amount. If they want to take you to court at that point you should be fine, because you've already done the reasonable thing.
    In future, don't start work on things you can't fix if they go wrong. And make sure you have insurance, because it can get very expensive - much more than 800 - if you mess up in someone's house.
    • missile
    • By missile 10th Nov 18, 12:56 PM
    • 9,818 Posts
    • 4,949 Thanks
    missile
    800 does seem very steep.

    As this is a door lock and it seems OPs customer would be unable to secure the door after OP attempted to repair(?). Perhaps the bill includes an emergency call out charge.
    "A nation's greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members." ~ Mahatma Gandhi
    Ride hard or stay home
    • George Michael
    • By George Michael 10th Nov 18, 1:02 PM
    • 3,230 Posts
    • 4,338 Thanks
    George Michael
    Even though that price is probably far in excess of what should have been paid, A fair bit of the cost will depend on where the location is and what time the repair was carried out.

    If it was somewhere remote and the customer called a 24 hour emergency locksmith then the initial callout fee and the first hours labour could easily be 100+ and if the door needed to be disassembled to remove the jammed lock, there might be a few hours labour which again, if it was at night won't be cheap.
    Add on to the cost of parts (again, parts that probably have a huge markup) and the job cost would soon start to rocket.

    Ineedadviceman101, one other thing that you really should have (apart from insurance) is a list of known and trusted professionals such as an electrician, plumber, gas engineer, roofer and a locksmith.
    You never know when you might encounter something that you are not too sure about or something that you are not legally qualified to work on and having someone to call could well get you out of the ****.
    • scd3scd4
    • By scd3scd4 10th Nov 18, 2:50 PM
    • 1,011 Posts
    • 892 Thanks
    scd3scd4
    Ohh come on, you don't get to charge what you want. It was to be reasonable.


    Again............ask for a copy of the receipt and then do some homework. At the end of the day it wont cost much more to call their bluff and go to a CC and pay if you lose.
    • bris
    • By bris 10th Nov 18, 3:27 PM
    • 8,163 Posts
    • 7,122 Thanks
    bris
    Are you saying that any self employed person could start a job, then when that job went wrong, simply walk away with the excuse "Not my area of expertise mate, best you get a professional in to fix what I have done"?

    What the OP should have done is to arrange (and pay for) a specialist to complete the job that they had started.
    Originally posted by shaun from Africa
    No, but a lot of the time you don't know what a job entails until you get there and have a look.
    I assume the door was already faulty so it was still faulty when he left.
    Changing a lock on a upvc door couldn't be any easier and really nothing can go wrong.
    It's one screw that holds it in and it just slips out, there is no where for it to fall into.
    But when the mechanism is faulty the tend to fall to pieces on the inside due to age.


    The mechanism runs the entire length of the door, held in by about 8 screws. This is taken out and matched up by a specialist such as Sealco (who I use) and put back in. It's not a big job so regardless 800 is a rip off.


    So anyone can change a UPVC lock but when the mechanism is faulty not many like to take it on. So is the customer any worse off after the OP left? Faulty door at the start, still faulty when he left, so the customer has a tough case.


    If the OP admits he screwed up the job then that's a different story.
    Last edited by bris; 10-11-2018 at 3:29 PM.
    • Ineedadviceman101
    • By Ineedadviceman101 10th Nov 18, 3:42 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Ineedadviceman101
    Thanks for advice all, I do have public liability insurance covering accidental damage - but they want the claimant to pay the first 250 so. If that can be avoided that would be ideal.
    • shaun from Africa
    • By shaun from Africa 10th Nov 18, 4:21 PM
    • 10,462 Posts
    • 11,803 Thanks
    shaun from Africa
    Changing a lock on a upvc door couldn't be any easier and really nothing can go wrong.
    Originally posted by bris
    "nothing can go wrong" right up until the time that something did go wrong.
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

673Posts Today

4,580Users online

Martin's Twitter