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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70416
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I had 4 staff walk out in early december 2014 , without

Resolved Question:

Hi I had 4 staff walk out in early december 2014 , without notice. Thia was two days after they held me hostage in one of the rooms for an hour. The police were called and they suggested i stay somewhere else that night. They left some belongings in there rooms. They were live in staff. I run a pub in laleham. A couple of days afterwards I tried to contact them regarding there belongings and that they could not stay here indefinitely. I also asked for the return of some of my belongings that were taken . I had no reply. We then bagged up all of there belongings and put them in one room. 5 weeks later they contacted us asking for there belongings. I asked them if they were bring back my belongings that went missing, they replied no. I then made an arrangement for them to collect there belongings and they did so. Then a week later i was sent a letter from a solicitor saying that various stuff was missing. What is my legal responsibility as I returned everything that was theres.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Your legal responsibility is to return what belongs to them having taken reasonable care of it.
This will come down to which version of events is accepted. On your account you have complied with the law. They will be saying that there were other items which are lost. If their account is accepted then you are potentially liable depending upon whether a court finds that a five weeks is too great a delay.
If they do sue you then you could always counter claim for the items that they have which usually helps to focus the mind of a claimant.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Is there a time limit on contact to collect belongings as I heard that after two weeks I could have just disposed of it all.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
There are no clear time limits.
Everything is a question of reasonableness.
The problem here though is that you did return some items and so a court will not accept the defence of abandonment for that reason.
This will come down to a dispute over what was returned.
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