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Laws and Lessons for Lost and Found

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seashanty

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i just got off the phone with a former guest (september 2008) who is searching for a lost item. (preteen girl and father were the guests) i told her father i had closed for the season but that her lost item had not turned up in all this time. apparently, it's a little black case with an ipod in it and some other items. i had looked for this and never found it two days after they stayed ... i looked under the bed, in all the desk drawers in the room, in the closet. i also looked IN the library sofa and on book shelves ... as well as in the breakfast room. she is certain it is in the b&b. it may well be in some dark corner, somewhere.
i did not mention the possibility but the implication was almost spoken if it WAS there, then someone else took it. my policy was, if a chambermaid found something, she was to put it in my care. if something turned up, especially something like this, i would contact the owner and ask for instructions and payment for its return. since i have moved out, i suggested he contact the b&b in the spring and ask that they be 'on the lookout' for it.
i've been looking online at hospitality legal issues and reading about taking due care, and reasonable precautions, and if something is found. are there actual laws in place, does anyone know? do you post yet another sign about guest property? i am learning that these signs do not limit a b&b's liability if guest property goes missing.
 

Samster

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I have on our registration form, which they sign at check-in, that the Inn is not responsible for loss of money or valuable items. That's probably the best that we can do. Although, I think there is a level of comfort if the owners/innkeepers are the ones cleaning the rooms
We have had a few guests here that have left their doors unlocked in the Main House if they have both rooms taken by members of the same party. I ALWAYS tell them that the cottage guests have access to the keypad code to come in for breakfast, etc. & that they should lock their doors anyway.
I just recently had some items left behind which I have emailed the owners and have not heard back (clothing).
 

Landmark

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By our state law you are supposed to post a liability statement or ? like along with rates that on the back of your door or posted where it can be viewed by the guests.
 

Morticia

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I have it stated right on the reg form that the guest signs that we are not responsible for lost or stolen items. Now, should a guest choose to sue me stating my staff stole from them, I guess I'm on the hook for that. However, being as we have no staff, I'd be back off the hook because I don't need some kid's iPod badly enough to steal it.
Given that they've now had 3 months to figure out which place they are likely to get the money from (as all the OTHER places they stayed told them to take a hike) I'd guess it's a fishing expedition.
 

gillumhouse

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I just found another pair of shoes when asked if we had found some keys. Another reason I hate bed skirts - I have old knees! and they do not do well getting down on them to look under beds and back up - they kill me!
Have been asked a bout a ring and about some earrings over the years - lloked, not found and told them so. Heard nothing since. Have vary nice jackets, shoes, belts, assorted items of clothing.... IF they call or e-mail about it, I send otherwise - NO WAY! The only thing I mailed back the day of departure even before I could be contacted was medicine - I mean major amounts of pill bottles - left in a drawer by a freebie no less. No postage money was sent either.
 

swirt

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I just found another pair of shoes when asked if we had found some keys. Another reason I hate bed skirts - I have old knees! and they do not do well getting down on them to look under beds and back up - they kill me!
Have been asked a bout a ring and about some earrings over the years - lloked, not found and told them so. Heard nothing since. Have vary nice jackets, shoes, belts, assorted items of clothing.... IF they call or e-mail about it, I send otherwise - NO WAY! The only thing I mailed back the day of departure even before I could be contacted was medicine - I mean major amounts of pill bottles - left in a drawer by a freebie no less. No postage money was sent either..
You need a mirror on a stick so you can stand while looking under the bed....like the border patrol uses to look under cars.

 

gillumhouse

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I just found another pair of shoes when asked if we had found some keys. Another reason I hate bed skirts - I have old knees! and they do not do well getting down on them to look under beds and back up - they kill me!
Have been asked a bout a ring and about some earrings over the years - lloked, not found and told them so. Heard nothing since. Have vary nice jackets, shoes, belts, assorted items of clothing.... IF they call or e-mail about it, I send otherwise - NO WAY! The only thing I mailed back the day of departure even before I could be contacted was medicine - I mean major amounts of pill bottles - left in a drawer by a freebie no less. No postage money was sent either..
You need a mirror on a stick so you can stand while looking under the bed....like the border patrol uses to look under cars.

.
Aha!!!!
 

Morticia

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I just found another pair of shoes when asked if we had found some keys. Another reason I hate bed skirts - I have old knees! and they do not do well getting down on them to look under beds and back up - they kill me!
Have been asked a bout a ring and about some earrings over the years - lloked, not found and told them so. Heard nothing since. Have vary nice jackets, shoes, belts, assorted items of clothing.... IF they call or e-mail about it, I send otherwise - NO WAY! The only thing I mailed back the day of departure even before I could be contacted was medicine - I mean major amounts of pill bottles - left in a drawer by a freebie no less. No postage money was sent either..
gillumhouse said:
I just found another pair of shoes when asked if we had found some keys. Another reason I hate bed skirts - I have old knees! and they do not do well getting down on them to look under beds and back up - they kill me!
Have been asked a bout a ring and about some earrings over the years - lloked, not found and told them so. Heard nothing since. Have vary nice jackets, shoes, belts, assorted items of clothing.... IF they call or e-mail about it, I send otherwise - NO WAY! The only thing I mailed back the day of departure even before I could be contacted was medicine - I mean major amounts of pill bottles - left in a drawer by a freebie no less. No postage money was sent either.
I found a pair of fuzzy slippers after a couple of young guys left. Yikers! I hate being asked about missing items because many guests are upset and they don't believe it when we say we haven't found the missing item. Especially things like cellphones, credit cards and jewelry.
Hubs had a woman yelling at him over the summer because she KNEW she left her cellphone on the bed. He said, 'Have you tried calling your cell? That way we could listen for it here.' She hung up on him. Her FRIEND called back in a couple of minutes and said, 'Thank you, she found it in her purse.'
 

Morticia

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I just found another pair of shoes when asked if we had found some keys. Another reason I hate bed skirts - I have old knees! and they do not do well getting down on them to look under beds and back up - they kill me!
Have been asked a bout a ring and about some earrings over the years - lloked, not found and told them so. Heard nothing since. Have vary nice jackets, shoes, belts, assorted items of clothing.... IF they call or e-mail about it, I send otherwise - NO WAY! The only thing I mailed back the day of departure even before I could be contacted was medicine - I mean major amounts of pill bottles - left in a drawer by a freebie no less. No postage money was sent either..
You need a mirror on a stick so you can stand while looking under the bed....like the border patrol uses to look under cars.

.
swirt said:
You need a mirror on a stick so you can stand while looking under the bed....like the border patrol uses to look under cars.
Yeah, the AAA inspector uses that, too.
 

seashanty

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jee whiz! called the phone and heard it ringing in her purse! you know, when i'm looking for a cell phone i never think to suggest that!!!
 

Morticia

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jee whiz! called the phone and heard it ringing in her purse! you know, when i'm looking for a cell phone i never think to suggest that!!!.
seashanty said:
jee whiz! called the phone and heard it ringing in her purse! you know, when i'm looking for a cell phone i never think to suggest that!!!
What was most annoying was the hanging up part and that her friend called back. For Pete's sake, just call and say you're sorry for losing your temper, you were stressed and thanks for the suggestion. Yeesh. She hung up because she was SURE we were lying about her phone. What the heck were WE going to do with her phone?
 

seashanty

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i understand.
that is what hurts ... the implication that we have their stuff and want to keep it.
only once have i kept something. it is a little snoring stuffed bear that i found in a cupboard. don't know how long he was sitting in there. one of the chambermaids remembers finding him 'a couple of summers ago' before i arrived and putting him in the cupboard. i told her next time you find anything please give it to me so i can try to locate the owner. anyway, i saw that the bear had a battery cavity so i put batteries in and .... zzzzzzzz .... he's a riot. i wonder who lost him!
 
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