Customer Property Damage

Discussion in 'General Industry Discussions' started by rodfather, Aug 1, 2006.

  1. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Has anyone made an employee pay for damage to a customer's property from using a mower? Here's my dilemma...

    In early July one evening, a customer (family friend and neighbor) phones and informs me that their new wrought iron fence (installed last March) around their pool has been run into by one of our big WB's, knocked loose, and a post has to be replaced. I go and look that evening and sure as hell I see red paint on the bottom of the post and it is about to fall over. I ask that crew who did it the next morning and find the culprit. I explicitly tell him to stay at least 4 or 6 inches away and trim along the fence in the future with a trimmer. I told the customer I will take care of the damage and promise it will not happen again.

    I get a phone call today (8/1) from the same customer informing me that 2 more posts will have to be replaced and another 3 have been hit and nicked as well. Estimate for repair/replacement is now $675 over and above just the one post that I said I would take care. He's a college kid and this is his first year although he has been running the same machine 5 days a week since the beginning of May.

    What would you do and/or say to this employee? Can I dock his pay/make him reimburse for repair? My first warning to him in front of his foreman and another employee was if it happens again, it will come out of his pocket. Is that legal?

    Anyone have experience in this type of matter? Any advice (legal or not) is greatly appreciated...
     
  2. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    Not legal to take it out of his pay but its OK to take it out of his azz :weightlifter:
     
  3. lawnmaniac883

    lawnmaniac883 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,613

    Bust out a donald trump "You're fired!"
     
  4. scaper27

    scaper27 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 115

    either you pay for it or you are fired.

    I take care of the first screwup like that and then the second time for the same thing is all yours and you will be paying somehow
     
  5. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    That makes sense (no pun intended). At $17.50 an hour with 5 weeks of work left before he goes back to school, he would stand to loose 3500 bucks unless he found another job immediately.
     
  6. 6'7 330

    6'7 330 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,823

    Rod,

    Are paying out of pocket, or filling a Liability claim?
     
  7. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    most likely oop Bill
     
  8. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    If its not a written policy to pay for damages then he might be filing for unemployment for the next 6 months for "unjust termination" and you will still be partly paying him.

    Have him sign a paper that if it happens again then it will be 3 times he did the damage and has to pay for all repairs.

    Then have someone else do it one more time and you get rid of the kid + he has to pay :)
     
  9. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    I don't think he's that bright mac...like I said, he'll be going back to school in early Septmember.
     
  10. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900


    Nothing like sitting in class all day drawing unemployment bennys :laugh: :laugh:

    employment bureau ---- were you intending on working full time while going to school?
    dumbass--------- absolutly, till I was unjustly fired!
    employment bureau ----- claim approved!



    Its the dumb ones that know how to work the system :waving:
     

Share This Page