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Old 17.01.2018, 09:38
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Material damage: employee responsibility

Hello

My former employer is asking me to pay an invoice to repair my professional laptop after I handed it back (there were scars on the screen). Do you know if I have to pay for it or if it falls under employer responsibility? I searched the Web for the answer but could not find it...

Many thanks!
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Old 17.01.2018, 10:18
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

Not a lawyer but normally computer would be treated as work tool, just like a wrench to a handyman. So:
- if computer was provided and used in normal performance of your duties (you didn't ask for one when you didn't need/use in your job)
- you used it with reasonable care and responsibility (e.g. you didn't damage intentionally)
- your work contract doesn't specify that you provide all tools needed for your work, or that you are responsible if employer provides them

then I (and I believe most courts/arbitrators) don't see grounds for employer to ask any costs even if computer was accidentally totally destroyed.

Also note, computers are fully depreciated and have book value of zero after 3 years. Repairs on 2-year old computers are often more than BV.

Being correct and being wise aren't always the same thing. Maybe it's wise just to pay repair to avoid conflict or risk getting non-enthusiastic Arbeitszeugnis.

Alternative (if computer is more than 2 years old) is to decline paying the repair but offer to buy the computer for company book value.

Good luck!
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Old 17.01.2018, 10:41
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

Sorry if I am missing it, what BV stands for? Would love to give a thank you click but I don't know how to do it.
Sound advice all together
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Old 17.01.2018, 10:50
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

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Sorry if I am missing it, what BV stands for? Would love to give a thank you click but I don't know how to do it.
Sound advice all together
Book Value
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Old 17.01.2018, 10:34
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

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Hello

My former employer is asking me to pay an invoice to repair my professional laptop after I handed it back (there were scars on the screen). Do you know if I have to pay for it or if it falls under employer responsibility? I searched the Web for the answer but could not find it...

Many thanks!
Under normal conditions and if you cared for the laptop reasonably well you can't be held liable. Why/how did it get in disrepair?
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Old 17.01.2018, 11:42
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

Unless you threw it out the window on purpose, I can't see why you would be held liable.

A few minor scratches are normal wear and tear. So no, no need to pay.
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Old 17.01.2018, 11:48
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

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Unless you threw it out the window on purpose, I can't see why you would be held liable.

A few minor scratches are normal wear and tear. So no, no need to pay.
The company either insures or self insures for loss or damage, it's not the responsibility of an employee to insure company property.
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Old 17.01.2018, 12:14
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

Is there a clause regarding this in your employment contract?
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Old 17.01.2018, 12:30
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

If you have a third party liability insurance (Haftpflicht Versicherung), which you are advised to have here anyway, just tell the inform the employer of your intention to tend the bill to the insurance company. Whether they pay or not is another matter.
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Old 17.01.2018, 15:04
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

At a place where I worked a few years ago you had to sign that you were responsible for any damages to laptops etc. (and two guys had their laptops stolen and had to pay for them. ouch.)
Unless you sign such a declaration, it's their own responsibility.
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Old 17.01.2018, 15:34
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

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Hello

My former employer is asking me to pay an invoice to repair my professional laptop after I handed it back (there were scars on the screen). Do you know if I have to pay for it or if it falls under employer responsibility? I searched the Web for the answer but could not find it...

Many thanks!
You are not liable for damages to a work laptop, unless you agreed/signed a contract specifically saying that you were. Especially if we are just talking wear and tear through normal use.
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Old 18.01.2018, 11:08
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

Now I want to know how it got scarred.:
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Old 18.01.2018, 11:15
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Re: Material damage: employee responsibility

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Now I want to know how it got scarred.:
My guess would be stress on the job!
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