Lost and Found
Anyone who has been watching my ranting on Twitter over the last couple of days will no doubt know that I returned from holiday over the weekend, but my luggage didn’t. Initially I wasn’t hugely concerned. The airline had it all under control and seemed to know where the missing case was and that it would be returned to me fairly quickly. What’s more, being an eternal optimist, I was happy to look on the bright side – it could have been worse and I could have lost it on the way out rather than the way back. Being stuck in a foreign (very warm) country without anything other than the jeans and jumper I had travelled in would have been far worse than returning to my own country where I have a house full of warm clothes. So losing a case full of shorts and t shirts was not a huge big deal.
However, as the hours ticked by and there was no sign of the case, or even anyone at the airline willing to admit that they knew what was going on, my previous good humour started to fade faster than my suntan. Whilst the case contained mostly summer wear, there are every day essentials (hair dryer, coat, electric shaver (yes, really) power cables) which are quite hard to be without for any length of time. What’s more, having a real aversion to shopping, the idea of having to replace everything was starting to fill me with dread!
After several days of calling, emailing, tweeting, facebooking and eventually a letter before action, the case was eventually returned. This was largely due to my threats, and the involvement of the travel company (not to mention the intelligence of the courier company whose offices received my case without any instructions!) rather than the actions of the airline who have largely done nothing except get in my way. They have, of course, done something else, which is to prove that the sign of a good company is not one that gets it right all the time (as we all make mistakes) but how we go about fixing things when they go wrong. We all need a disaster recovery plan in life, preferably one that we follow!
When considering your disaster recovery plan, have you thought about the legal implications of what you need to do/protect yourself from. For example,
· Do your contracts/ts and cs put a reasonable limit on your liability. You can’t exclude your liability altogether but you might be able to put a cap on it in certain circumstances, but if you get it wrong, it may be completely invalid and so of no use to you.
· Do all your staff have contracts of employment that correctly limits what they can and cannot do in their own time and when they leave you. Badly worded clauses can be worse than no clauses at all!
· Do you have agreements with your colleagues (such as a shareholders agreement or a partnership agreement) so that if something were to go wrong between you, you all know where you stand and what your options are.
· Do you have a will in place!
If you think you might have lost your way or missed an important area in considering your disaster recovery plan, find your way over to us for a complimentary consultation on the issues you should be thinking about.
Kleyman & Co Solicitors. The full service law firm. We can help you deal with all kinds of baggage!