Violinist Sues Luthier Over Snap Decision


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I believe that unless one of us speaks to one, or both, the principals involved, we won't have a good idea of what's really going on... and even then, we may not.

 

My first reaction is similar in content to what David mentioned...  I suspect a case of limits to insurance coverage and liability.  

 

I have recently observed (luckily at arms length) a couple cases in which the owners insurance has directed them to make a claim, or seek a judgement, with/against a shop when damage has occurred.  In the past, my experience has been that the insurance companies tended to subrogate the claim (pays the owner, then seeks reimbursement from the shop owners insurer), but these last couple of instances I mention seems to indicate that that has either changed, or that some policies are written with the sort of exclusion that requires the owner to take action like this.

 

Interestingly, my brother went through something similar concerning property insurance.  The company covering the renter directed them to make a claim against him, and advised my brother to make a claim against a contractor who cause the difficulty.... funny thing was the same parent company covered the renter, my brother and the contractor.  Go figure.

 

Time to read our policies and ask questions of our agents...  and maybe to advise our clients to do the same.

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Certainly we need to check our policies. I think it is also very important to have rigid check lists and procedure almost like a pilot. As a maker I mainly deal with stuff that I made coming back. It might seem anal but I never allow an instrument that I do not own to go through a door at my place unless it is in a case etc.

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I checked my insurance policy and compared it to Jacob Saunders', as a consequence I emailed Larks to ask for confirmation that my policy, which doesn't explicitedly exclude damage done by me, would actually cover a case like the one we are talking about here.
If thats the case they offer a reasonably gooed deal, at least if you actually want an insurance.

Rodney Mohrs advice on not working on bows that you are not able to pay out on your own, is sound advice too. I mean, the risk is actually very low, and there are not so many bows that are worth more than a couple of thousands.


From an insurance company I would expect, that they don't make me starring in a lawsuit when there is a liability, but as of now it is speculation if that is the case here.

 

Edit:

Got a reply, saying that accidents at the workbench are covered but not damage as a result of my work. Refering me to exclusion ''Q'' which is on the back of the coverage page, hidden well behind the usual terrorist, nuclear, environmental desaster exclusion....

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Edit:

Got a reply, saying that accidents at the workbench are covered but not damage as a result of my work. Refering me to exclusion ''Q'' which is on the back of the coverage page, hidden well behind the usual terrorist, nuclear, environmental desaster exclusion....

 

Any breakage that happens at the bench is an accident. All you need is a good lawyer to make that claim.

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The best advice I could ever give regarding working on bows is to know your skills--and know your limitations. I see a lot of bows damaged by well-intentioned, but not-so-skilled repairmen. If something comes in and you are not comfortable with doing the work, refer it out.

With bows, every bow that comes in for work gets an inspection (usually taking no more than 20-30 seconds) that includes assessing any condition issues to the stick, the tip ivory, the grip, the frog, the eyelet, the screw holes, and making sure that removable parts like the ferrule and button look original. Before any heating of the stick for straightening or camber work, I always clean the stick first, and then inspect it under a good light, and then go to a dark closet with a hand held black light to inspect for any glue lines or finish irregularities that might illuminate a hidden repair.

No intent to hijack the thread in any way, this seems like good advice all around, whether dealing with bows or instruments, before documenting the condition of the instrument with photos pre-repair.  We now return you to our regularly scheduled thread...

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Good point, although having a bent bow, particularly to the right, is like having a hang nail or a splinter:  It's hard not to be in continual irritation over it.  It just nags at me.

Having a bow that drifts slightly away from the playing side is most of the time preferable.

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No intent to hijack the thread in any way, this seems like good advice all around, whether dealing with bows or instruments, before documenting the condition of the instrument with photos pre-repair.  We now return you to our regularly scheduled thread...

I couldnot agree more. Every employee in our shop has an I pad at the bench or desk for taking and viewing photos amongst other things, and we shoot 8 pictures of every bow when it comes in every time.

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I had an (unfortunately unknown to me) famously litigant happy customer send me a Hill peg to copy from a broken set of pegs. He begged me to help him out, flattering me like I was the best thing since sliced bread. I lost money copying the damn thing in both boxwood and mountain mahogany even doing a little antiquing on them. He then accused me of scratching the original Hill peg which was total BS and threatened legal action. I didn't find out till later how many times he had pulled this kind of thing on some of my friends in the Biz. This may be off topic as I have no real knowledge of the OP case or the people involved but

even the humble violin peg turner is not  immune from guarding his ass in the World we live and work in.  

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I had an (unfortunately unknown to me) famously litigant happy customer send me a Hill peg to copy from a broken set of pegs. He begged me to help him out, flattering me like I was the best thing since sliced bread. I lost money copying the damn thing in both boxwood and mountain mahogany even doing a little antiquing on them. He then accused me of scratching the original Hill peg which was total BS and threatened legal action. I didn't find out till later how many times he had pulled this kind of thing on some of my friends in the Biz. This may be off topic as I have no real knowledge of the OP case or the people involved but

even the humble violin peg turner is not  immune from guarding his ass in the World we live and work in.

Perhaps you could tell us which orchestra he plays with.

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Very expensive...but worth suing over?

He was probably going to claim serious emotional injury:  he could no longer do certain things under certain circumstances with certain types of people.   :)

 

But seriously, maybe there ought to be a data base of these jokers for the protection of all of us.  Could it be handled legally, and maybe with the help of something like the AFVBM or VSA?  Maybe too rare to bother with.

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It was a bit more complicated than the cost of one peg (wow what a surprise :unsure:).  He was suing another bloke because the peg broke off when he was trying out a commissioned sale. He stated that the worth of the fiddle was lessened by some outrageous amount. Even though I am a normally peaceful man I fantasized (no threat intended you SOB) ..... never mind. The middle man let me hear a phone recording in which the litigant  called me all kinds of rotten insults. I'd sue him myself for defamation of character if  I wasn't lazy and up against a professional litigant.

 

Jerry, you probably already know who it is. He's big on claiming bows are damaged.    

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It was a bit more complicated than the cost of one peg (wow what a surprise :unsure:).  He was suing another bloke because the peg broke off when he was trying out a commissioned sale. He stated that the worth of the fiddle was lessened by some outrageous amount. Even though I am a normally peaceful man I fantasized (no threat intended you SOB) ..... never mind. The middle man let me hear a phone recording in which the litigant  called me all kinds of rotten insults. I'd sue him myself for defamation of character if  I wasn't lazy and up against a professional litigant.

 

Jerry, you probably already know who it is. He's big on claiming bows are damaged.

Probably, I am pretty sure he is on my "no soup" list.

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