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Discuss Taken to the cleaners...! Please advise! in the Insurance for Plumbers area at

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  1. Podser

    Podser New Member

    Hello everyone am new to this so hope I get it right! Please can anyone advise on the following:
    During a boiler repair last year some boiler fluid got through our dust sheets and marked the customer's cream coloured carpet. We offered to restore the carpet ourselves by cleaning and failing that go through our insurance. The customer insisted on sorting it themselves and we agreed to discount their bill by a very large chunk to allow for them paying excess and claiming on their own house insurance.
    We have now received a bill from a Recoveries Unit acting for the customer's house insurers claiming all costs from us and demanding that we send the customer the total excess they have paid. We have already paid out as I said above.
    Does anyone know if this is the normal procedure in insurance claims? Should we have insisted on sorting this ourselves (but actually how can you insist if customer refuses?) any advice on how to proceed will be very welcome.
  2. lame plumber

    lame plumber Guest

    send them the full invoice amount and ask for payment before youll go any further and explain that if they continue with this claim youll be counter suing for the money already discounted and any admin costs incurred. you should have given the discount with a disclaimer included that this was a full and final payment for cleaning their carpet as agreed, but thats a lesson learned
  3. snowhead

    snowhead Well-Known Member

    Just a few thoughts;

    You have only paid the customer for their future loss of discount on insurance premiums, NOT the costs of repair.

    Ultimately you are responsible for the repair costs so should have had the right to carry out repairs providing they are to the customers satisfaction,, The customer denied you that right.

    You need to speak to your own insurers who will be able to come up with a deal to sort this out.

    The situation has been caused by a lack of understanding by both the customer and yourself on how Insurance co's work, if someone else is responsible they will pursue them for the claim payout value, plus their costs.
    Last edited: May 19, 2013
  4. lame plumber

    lame plumber Guest

    if the customer has taken any payment/discount from you then it is my understanding that that is case closed, if their insurers want to chase you down, take the stance that you have already paid and the customer had accepted that. See how that goes first, and as stated you may wish to tell your insurers,who wont be overly impressed but hey ho.
  5. vern

    vern Trusted Plumber GSR

    First time I have heard black gold called boiler fluid lol
    • Like Like x 2
  6. AWheating

    AWheating Trusted Plumber GSR

    severs em right for having cream carpet. who in there right mind would?

    i would reply to the letter that you have already paid your customer for the damages and any issue they have must be taken up with them. The insurance is with them, your contract is with them. you have no legal contract with there insurance company as far as i can see?

    sounds like they are trying it on.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Ivor Bates

    Ivor Bates Guest

    This is why you have public liability insurance, all you would have paid for, is your excess. Take a photograph of the damaged carpet and also of the whole carpet. Ask the customer to get 3 quotes from carpet cleaners and that should be the end of it. If the customer becomes greedy, is unreasonable and wants to claim for stress, time out from work, therapy then hand the claim to your insurance company, but you will never pay more than your own excess...
    • Like Like x 1
  8. kimbo

    kimbo Guest

    As I understand it if you mess up whether it be a bad installation or damage to customers carpets you have to be given the chance to sort it out yourself, otherewise it is up to the customer to get it sorted and claim back from you.
  9. Keefy

    Keefy Plumber

    I think bringing their house insurance into it has caused the confusion in the first place. If you'd gotten a quote from a carpet cleaner and then knocked that cost off the bill - stating this on the final bill together with customer's signature, that would have been the end of it.
    • Like Like x 2
  10. lame plumber

    lame plumber Guest

    customers already taken a payment so contractually that is the end of it!
    • Like Like x 2
  11. Gray0689

    Gray0689 Trusted Plumber GSR

    I'd personally agree with this post
    • Like Like x 1
  12. tamz

    tamz Guest

    If you ever have to give anything to a customer as a payment towards damages always get a receipt signed stating what the damages were, the amount you are paying them in settlement and that they are accepting it IN FULL AND FINAL PAYMENT.
    They can't come back to you then.
    We all learned the hard way.
    • Like Like x 2
  13. vern

    vern Trusted Plumber GSR

    Great advice....
  14. Derek Hardman

    Derek Hardman Guest

    You may have another argument here, if you are paying for a replacement carpet, then the old carpet is yours, if they cant provide that (because it is still in the house, or has been removed), they had no right, it belongs to you and you were not consulted about it.
    Also, i dont think they can claim excess from you after the fact, you have a right to know what you are paying for and how much.
  15. Keefy

    Keefy Plumber


    How big was this stain anyway?
    • Like Like x 1
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