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Old 17.12.2020, 16:15
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Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

Our tenant was unfortunate to have a tire ripped because of a scrap of metal that was left by the workmen who did some maintenance job earlier that day and apparently didn't clean as thoroughly as they should.
I have been presented with the bill, Do I legally have to pay for this? It seems to me it was an accident.
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Old 17.12.2020, 16:42
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

I would say that the workmen are liable as they didn't clean up their stuff.
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Old 17.12.2020, 16:52
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

In the event that you have building liability insurance (Gebäudehaftpflichtversicherung), you might wish to pass the invoice to the insurer for handling. If you do not have building liability insurance, this Helvetia link describes it (English):


https://www.helvetia.com/ch/web/en/p...liability.html
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Old 17.12.2020, 16:52
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

An accident is something that can't be avoided with reasonable care.

Not tidying up sharp stuff after doing work is not an accident, it is careless and IMO the company of the workmen should cover the cost.

ps. as the landlord and person who contracted the work it's your responsibility to sort this out
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Old 17.12.2020, 16:54
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

I thought it was mandatory for a building owner to have insurance?
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Old 17.12.2020, 17:06
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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An accident is something that can't be avoided with reasonable care.

Not tidying up sharp stuff after doing work is not an accident, it is careless and IMO the company of the workmen should cover the cost.

ps. as the landlord and person who contracted the work it's your responsibility to sort this out
fair enough, thanks,
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Old 17.12.2020, 17:12
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

Thanks for all the replies.

I will check with our insurance company but in reality the bill isn't that big anyways.
I was hoping I could offer to split the bill with the car owner to avoid arguments as there isn't really proof that the tire damage was caused by the leftover debris.
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Old 17.12.2020, 18:25
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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Our tenant was unfortunate to have a tire ripped because of a scrap of metal that was left by the workmen who did some maintenance job earlier that day and apparently didn't clean as thoroughly as they should.
I have been presented with the bill, Do I legally have to pay for this? It seems to me it was an accident.
You're asking Swiss expats about the current UK laws?
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Old 17.12.2020, 18:36
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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You're asking Swiss expats about the current UK laws?
nope
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Old 18.12.2020, 00:07
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

3 Options:

British solution: Say sorry me old chap, pay up, pour yourself another G&T. Unpause Downton Abbey.
Half Swiss solution: Don't say sorry, offer the split the bill.
Full Nutty Swiss: Depreciate the value of tyre according to age and Kms. Suggest they weren't watching where they were going. Ask for photographic evidence. Refer them to your insurer and drive a wrecking ball through the delicate tenant/landlord relationship creating endless unknown future problems.
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Old 18.12.2020, 09:40
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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3 Options:

British solution: Say sorry me old chap, pay up, pour yourself another G&T. Unpause Downton Abbey.
Half Swiss solution: Don't say sorry, offer the split the bill.
Full Nutty Swiss: Depreciate the value of tyre according to age and Kms. Suggest they weren't watching where they were going. Ask for photographic evidence. Refer them to your insurer and drive a wrecking ball through the delicate tenant/landlord relationship creating endless unknown future problems.
You've obviously never dealt with a British letting agent, you missed the bit where they ignore you for a couple of months, then change all their staff and lose the email, then merge with another agent and lose it again, and in the end tell you they'll evict you if you dare to complain again.
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Old 18.12.2020, 14:58
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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Thanks for all the replies.

I will check with our insurance company but in reality the bill isn't that big anyways.
I was hoping I could offer to split the bill with the car owner to avoid arguments as there isn't really proof that the tire damage was caused by the leftover debris.
Why is there not proof? You said in your first post this is what happened
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Old 18.12.2020, 15:20
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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Why is there not proof? You said in your first post this is what happened
It isn't a criminal case, the proof doesn't have to be 100% clear cut.

If the metal was lying around where it shouldn't, and the tyre was damaged after driving over it, surely that is reasonable proof.
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Old 19.12.2020, 20:48
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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Why is there not proof? You said in your first post this is what happened
like newtoswitz said above. There is a high chance that this is what happened but the damage could've also happened while driving to/from somewhere.

there is no pictures of the metal/screw embedded on the tyre (plus the tenant says 2 tyres were damaged in the process, unfortunately)

unlucky
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Old 19.12.2020, 22:44
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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like newtoswitz said above. There is a high chance that this is what happened but the damage could've also happened while driving to/from somewhere.

there is no pictures of the metal/screw embedded on the tyre (plus the tenant says 2 tyres were damaged in the process, unfortunately)

unlucky
I was referring to the fact that your opening post said this is what happened (without stating any doubts) and after said "there is no proof" - I found that a contradiction
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Old 20.12.2020, 09:47
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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like newtoswitz said above. There is a high chance that this is what happened but the damage could've also happened while driving to/from somewhere.

there is no pictures of the metal/screw embedded on the tyre (plus the tenant says 2 tyres were damaged in the process, unfortunately)

unlucky
If they didn't bother to take pictures I'd change my view slightly - it seems such an obvious thing to do, even for insurance purposes, that I wonder why they didn't?

Two tyres does tend to point more to it being in the garage though - that would be very very rare in most situations, so if there was a pile of stuff lying in their path in a known location that's most likely the cause.
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Old 20.12.2020, 18:29
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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If they didn't bother to take pictures I'd change my view slightly - it seems such an obvious thing to do, even for insurance purposes, that I wonder why they didn't?

Two tyres does tend to point more to it being in the garage though - that would be very very rare in most situations, so if there was a pile of stuff lying in their path in a known location that's most likely the cause.
I think it would be because they drove over something, went out to inspect the tires and tried dislodging the stuff thinking it may be just stuck, and when dislodged noticed the tires being slashed?

What is really the other option? Person got 2 tires slashed somewhere, anyway rode home with 2 slashed tires where conveniently found stuff lying around the garage which matched something that could slash tires and invented tires slashed there?

OP was not telling about any doubts on happening until he/she were told they are responsible, then doubts happened. I find that strange.
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Old 21.12.2020, 02:33
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

Would you also pay them if they rammed the car into the concrete wall?

There is simply no way that you would be liable. Tell the driver to forget about you paying, and to stop driving while asleep at the wheel. Oh, and perhaps recommend Fielmann for them to get glasses.

Besides, unless the tyres are as good as new it'll probably take four new ones as the two sliced up are probably on the same side. Because you should make sure both tyres on an axle are the same make and in a like state.
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Old 21.12.2020, 09:59
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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Would you also pay them if they rammed the car into the concrete wall?

There is simply no way that you would be liable. Tell the driver to forget about you paying, and to stop driving while asleep at the wheel. Oh, and perhaps recommend Fielmann for them to get glasses.

Besides, unless the tyres are as good as new it'll probably take four new ones as the two sliced up are probably on the same side. Because you should make sure both tyres on an axle are the same make and in a like state.
Obviously not, but how is that relevant to leaving sharp metal lying on a garage floor?

If I went down to a parking garage and deliberately threw nails around, I assume the police would treat that as malicious damage to property, which to me is a fair indication that accidentally doing it is at best careless and culpable.

Also we are not talking about amateurs but professional workmen, where the expected standard is higher and where they are expected to have liability insurance to cover this sort of mistake.

On the tyres - it may be possible to align those tyres on the same axel. It would also be reasonable for the landlord to take into account their current state and value remaining, as an insurance company would.
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Old 21.12.2020, 13:13
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Re: Damage to car in garage. who takes the cost?

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Obviously not, but how is that relevant to leaving sharp metal lying on a garage floor?
Both are visible objects that a driver who's not asleep at the wheel will notice and react to appropriately. Failing to do so is the driver's problem given that general driving conditions in a garage are generally good.
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If I went down to a parking garage and deliberately threw nails around
Irrelevant, intention doesn't apply here (presumably).
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Also we are not talking about amateurs but professional workmen, where the expected standard is higher and where they are expected to have liability insurance to cover this sort of mistake.
Possible. For instance, a dughole on the road must be secured and marked by lighting or they (their employer, rather) may be responsible for the accident that causes. However, and contrary to OP's case, that's the intentional creation of a hazardous situation where common sense and ordinary foresight dictate that this must be warned of. After all, weather conditions making such a hazard very difficult to notice and adjust to in due time are to be expected.

However, and as already stated, that's not OP's problem.
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On the tyres - it may be possible to align those tyres on the same axel.
Many more things are possible than are recommendable.

On a 4WD vehicle the two may have been used/abrased similarly. However 4WD are still a clear minority.

But even that will often be useless because in many cases the profile is optimised for a certain rotational direction (for tyres for higher speeds that seems to be common). Switching a tyre from the left to the right, or vice versa, results in a change of the rotational direction, which is likely to increase the risk of aquaplaning and reduce grip. And with reduced grip on one wheel the car is considerably more likely to "break out" on ice/snow, or if you need to brake hard.

Of course this may result in liability issues in case of an accident. Obviously the tenant will rather be safe than sorry, even more so where someone else shoulders the bill.
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