Loss of Client Data - Lawsuit?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by alksion, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. alksion macrumors 68000

    alksion

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles County
    #1
    I have a buddy back east who runs a small IT company. He and another technician were migrating the client's data to a new server. At the start of migrating the data the HDD became unallocated.

    The drive is currently at a clean room where they told him things are not looking good. They also said the drive has multiple bad sectors. The client claimed that another company set up a mirror to another drive, but the clean room has said the second drive that was supposed to be mirrored was never set up. This was supposedly something that was set up by a company prior to my buddy's, but obviously never was.

    Big mistake is that my buddy never had them sign anything prior, but he did tell me that the T&C on his website explicitly protects them from something like this.

    He asked me if I think they have a case to sue for, but I have absolutely no idea.

    What do you guys think?
     
  2. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    New England, USA
    #2
    Just a suggestion...but wouldn't your buddy be better off consulting a lawyer, rather than seeking guesses here?
     
  3. alksion thread starter macrumors 68000

    alksion

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles County
    #3
    You're absolutely right. However, if it's small claims, there's no lawyers involved. I was just curious, that's all.
     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #4
    Not a lawyer, but from what I have read, he may have a tough time with that. He would need to show they read those terms and accepted them. I don't know that just having the terms available on a web site will cut it.
     
  5. alksion thread starter macrumors 68000

    alksion

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles County
    #5
    Thanks for the info. I'll certainly pass it his way.
     
  6. FreakinEurekan macrumors 68040

    FreakinEurekan

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Eureka Springs, Arkansas
    #6
    Anyone can sue for anything - whether they'll win or not is a different matter, and what it'll cost (in dollars, time, & reputation) to defend it is another issue too.

    He may have "Errors & Omissions" coverage as part of his business insurance.

    Worst case, hopefully he's set up with a proper business entity to protect his personal assets.
     
  7. alksion thread starter macrumors 68000

    alksion

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles County
    #7
    Yeah, he is an LLC. I'm not too sure about his insurance though..
     
  8. mikecwest macrumors 6502a

    mikecwest

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2013
    #8
    I would think that if they paid someone else to setup the backup drive, and they failed to do so, they would have a better case against that company.
     
  9. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
    #9
    Having E&O insurance is very important. It was one of the first things my wife did when she set up her business.
     
  10. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #10
    I think if your buddy is at all worried then he does need to contact an actual lawyer. Small claims or not, which loss of client data seems like they would try to hit him for more than a small claim amount.

    T&C on a website means very little. He should have and should always have a contract for work to be done. Especially if he is operating as a legitimate business. Your friend could very well be screwed or he could skate by, it is hard to say.
     
  11. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

    Macky-Mac

    Joined:
    May 18, 2004
    #11
    it doesn't sound like it's something that would end up in small claims court
     
  12. chown33 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    #12
    Small claims court means you're not represented by a lawyer in court (among other limitations).

    It doesn't mean you can't (or shouldn't) seek legal advice from counsel beforehand.
     
  13. iizmoo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2014
    #13
    So where's the backup in all of this? And is the drive still under manufacturer's warranty if it has bad sectors all over it? What is the IT company's advertised acceptable level of service?

    It cost around $1500 to do a clean room restore, most small claim courts limit is $5000 (I got stuck in jury selection for 2 days on a $15000 case that was laywered for 3 years before heading to trial).
     
  14. alksion thread starter macrumors 68000

    alksion

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Los Angeles County
    #14
    Thanks for all the information everyone! They ended up recovering everything but only in RAW. Luckily, the company supposedly had a back up from 6 months ago.

    Looks like he skated by lol. I'm sure he'll do things differently now.
     
  15. alent1234 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    #15
    even if he gets sued the client will have to prove he made the HD break.

    hard drives break all the time, client should have had a recent backup or made sure that the mirroring was set up
     

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